Create cases automatically

NVivo provides a number of quick ways to create cases—for example, you can:

  • Create cases from selected files—this is most useful when the entire file represents a single case (unit of analysis). When you create cases from your files the entire content of the file is coded.
  • Create cases based on the speaker names in a document.
  • Import a spreadsheet (called a 'classification sheet' in NVivo) containing respondent names and demographic variables.
  • Import a survey or social media dataset and automatically create and classify cases based on the content.

The approach you take depends on the type of data you are working with.

Set up cases for interviews

If you have interview transcripts saved as files in NVivo (and there is a file for each participant), you can follow these steps to set up cases:

Goal

Steps to get there...

Add a classification to your project:

A classification called Participant added to Case Classifications.

  1. On the Create tab, click Case Classification
  2. Enter a name for the classification. For example, Person, Participant, Interviewee.

Add attributes to the classification:

Attributes for Age, Gender and Occupation added to the Participant classification.

  1. In List View, right-click on the classification and click New Attribute.
  2. Enter a name for the attribute. For example, Age, Gender or Occupation.
  3. If you know the values for the attribute you can add them now. Click the plus sign at the bottom of the attributes panel. For example—for Gender, you could add Male and Female.

Create cases from your interview files:

Creating cases from selected interviews in List View.

  1. In List View, select the interview files. (Hold down the SHIFT key to select multiple files).
  2. In the context menu, click Create as / Cases
  3. In List View, right-click on the new cases, choose Classification and assign the cases to the classification you created.

Now, you have a case for each participant and the content of the interview has been coded to the case. Click on Cases in Navigation view to see the new cases.

Set the attribute values for each case:

Setting attribute values for a case in List View.

  1. In Navigation View, click Case Classifications.
  2. Expand the classification and then expand the case.
  3. Click the pencil icon to update an attribute value.
  4. Click the magnifying glass to see the list of existing values or clear the value and enter a new one.

Set up cases for focus groups

If you have focus group transcripts saved as documents in NVivo, you can follow these steps to set up cases:

Goal

Steps to get there...

Add a classification to your project

A classification called Participant added to Case Classifications.

  1. On the Create tab, in the Classifications group, click Case Classification
  2. Enter a name for the classification. For example, Person, Participant, Interviewee.

Add attributes to the new classification:

Attributes for Age, Gender and Occupation added to the Participant classification.

  1. On the Create tab in the Classifications group, click Attribute.
  2. Enter a name for the attribute. For example, Age, Gender or Occupation.
  3. If you know the values for the attribute you can add them now. Click the plus sign at the bottom of the attributes panel. For example—for Gender, you could add Male and Female.

Autocode the files by speaker

Auto coding selected Focus Group transcripts.

  1. In List View, select the focus group file.
  2. On the Home tab, click Autocode, and then By Speaker.
  3. Enter the name of each speaker as identified in the selected file. The speaker is added to the list and you can see the number of references that will be coded.
  4. Choose a location for the newly created cases and assign them to a new or existing classification.

Click on Cases in Navigation view to see the new cases.

Set the attribute values for each case:

Setting attribute values for a case in List View.

  1. In Navigation View, click Case Classifications.
  2. Expand the classification and then expand the case.
  3. Click the pencil icon to update an attribute value.
  4. Click the magnifying glass to see the list of existing values or clear the value and enter a new one.

NOTE

When autocoding by speaker, follow these guidelines for formatting the transcript:

  • The speaker name must appear at the start of a line. It cannot be proceeded by any characters—including tabs and spaces.
  • The speaker name can appear on the same line with the response or on a separate line above the response—as long as it is at the start of a line.
  • The transcript can be formatted as a table with the speaker name in the left column and the response in the right.
  • Each speaker must be identified by a unique name. NVivo creates a case for each unique speaker name and codes all content by that speaker at the case.

Create cases from a survey dataset

If you are working with a dataset containing survey responses, you can use the Autocode Dataset Assistant to create, classify and code to a case for each respondent. This will add the demographic information—for example, Age and Gender—from the classifying columns. Automatic coding in datasets

Datasets

Approaches to analyzing survey results

Create cases from a social media dataset

If you are working with datasets containing social media data imported from NCapture, NVivo creates cases to represent each user when you autocode by Username. So, you can create classified cases at the same time as you autocode the dataset.

When you autocode by Username, the cases are assigned to the classification 'Facebook User', 'Twitter User' , and profile information about the user is stored as attribute values on the cases.

  1. In List View, select the social media dataset and then on the Home tab, click Autocode.
  2. Follow the steps to:
    • Code to cases for each value in a column.
    • Choose the column that contains the Username.
    • Choose the content you want to code to the case. For example, Post and Comment Text or Tweet.
    • Choose a location for the new cases.

Create cases by importing a classification sheet

You can import files containing NVivo classification sheet data that was created outside NVivo—for example, data that was gathered in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet (you must save it to a text file before importing it into NVivo). Classification sheets