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QualCoder 3.3 Release

The latest release of QualCoder is now available. There are binaries for Windows 10/11 and Ubuntu 22.

The changes are detailed below:


Import a codes list from a plain text file. One code name per line. No categories are applied.


Throughout – added more key shortcuts. Under Help there is an option to display all the key shortcuts.
The colour selector shows how code colours can be seen with different types of colour impaired vision.
Under Coding menu there is a new window called Colour scheme. This allows a range of selected colours to be applied to a range of codes. This area also shows how the colours may be seen by people with different types of colour impairment.

Manage files

Can hide columns by right-click on the table header row for options to hide that column or to hide columns beginning with specific text. Or to show columns where the column name starts with specific text.
Can assign a file to a case via right-click menu when in the cases column.
Can right-click on a URL in an attribute and open the URL with the default web browser.
Faster table filling.

Twitter data

Import twitter data from a fully quoted csv file.
Example file in Examples folder.
Requires these exact column names: id and full_text headers for tweet data and screen_name for user data.
Additional tweet fields can be these exact column names:
created_at, coordinates, retweet_count, favorite_count, lang
Additional user fields can be:
location, url, description, followers_count, friends_count, listed_count, favourites_count, statuses_count

The twitter import page also has an example of how to use R with RTweet to extract tweet data. This was tested and worked before twitter applied a fee for service. Note that currently there is a cost associated with accessing twitter data. I cannot give advice on any problems you may have getting twitter data.

The tweet data is loaded into individual database files (Manage Files), The user data is loaded into cases (Manage cases). Multiple tweets (stored as files are assigned to the matching user (case).

Manage cases

Faster table filling
Can hide columns by right-click on the table header row for options to hide that column or to hide columns beginning with specific text. Or to show columns starting with a text value.
Can order by case name or by attribute value, ascending or descending.
Can hide rows by right-click menu and selecting a text value that equals or ‘is like’ some chosen text.

Case file manager

Some improved functions in this dialog include a check box to hide assigned files. The right hand side text edit will fill with any file text when the file is selected in the left hand side table.


Some markdown is enacted to make viewing journal entries nicer:
#, ##, ### for heading levels
text for bolded text
text for italic text

Code text

‘in vivo’ coding added. Selected text becomes the code

Colour scheme

There is a new window for setting colour ranges to codes. It also has options to see the codes from difference colour vision perspectives.


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Latest publications

Three theses published and one research article (In Swedish, Croatian and Czech):


Hållbar utveckling och miljöundervisningstraditioner i läromedel för kursen fysik 1 på gymnasiet (Sustainable Development and Traditions within Environmental Education Learning Materials concerning the Upper-secondary Physics 1 Course). Simon Karlsson. Thesis. 2022. KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM).

PhET-simulering som ett hjälpmedel för elevers förståelse av det fysikaliska begreppet fjäderkraft (PhET-simulation as a tool for student to help them understand the concept of Hooks law). Marzieh Karlsson. Thesis. 2022 (available from April 2023). Stockholms Universitet.

STEREOTYPY A IDENTIFIKACE V KONTEXTU BDSM (Stereotypes and identification in the context of BDSM). Radka Výborná. Bachelor Thesis. 2023. Univerzita Palackého v Olomouci.

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A happy twitter user commented on QualCoder

I failed installing RQDA on Debian 11, but I was able to install QualCoder to do qualitative analysis of text and imgages. It is also Free-Open Source, but it does not run in R but with Python virtual environment. So far I have liked it more than Atlas.ti web version (which, in addition, is paid)

Fracasé instalando RQDA en Debian 11, pero pude instalar QualCoder para hacer análisis cualitativo de text e imgagen. También es Free-Open Source, pero no corre en R sino con Python virtual environment. Hasta ahora me ha gustado más que Atlas.ti versión web (que, además, es de paga)


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Video from Temple university

Thank you to Van Tran, social sciences librarian from Temple University, Philadelphia, for creating this detailed instructional video using the upcoming 3.3 version.

See under this heading:

Temple Libraries QualCoder Workshop using QualCoder 3.3 Codes

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Video from University of Idaho

This 42 minute video workshop was created by the librarian at the University of Idaho, thank you. It uses QualCoder 3.2 on Windows.

Update to some of the information in the video:

You can merge a category into a category, by right clicking on a category and select Merge category into category.

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Opening original text documents

QualCoder imports plain text from Word, ODT, PDF documents. PDF importing can often be a problem and require editing after importation, as the PDF format is for print display not for text editing.

Now, with new projects, using the future 3.3 version, you will be able to open and view the original text document, from the Manage File and Code Text areas. The documents are opened by your default browser. So some will appear in the browser itself, and some documents will make the browser open the document using Microsoft Word or LibreOffice Writer, depending on which of these you have installed.

You can install the latest QualCoder code using the green download button and doing a manual install.

Older projects

Older projects will not have this option, but it can be added using database queries in the Reports > Database queries section

You will need to run sql statements that link the database entry to the text document stored in the project folder:

First save a copy of the project. This is a safe thing to do, in case your sql updates were incorrect.

Then run a sql statement like this example:

Lets say you imported a pdf called mypdf.pdf and that in the documents folder inside the qualcoder project folder it is there as mypdf.pdf

Then in Settings tick ‘showids’

Open Manage Files and see what the id number is for that entry. Lets say it is 5, as an example.

The below statement will update the entry to then be able to link and open that text file, when you use the menu option of viewing the original file.

update source set mediapath=”/docs/mypdf.pdf” where id=5

Then run the statement using the cogs button.

Refresh Manage Files by selecting Manage Files from the menu. and check that view original text is an option for that entry.

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Markdown formatting in journals

I have added markdown formatting in journals.

It does show the markdown symbols, but does help to frame journal entries. Note this is for the unreleased 3.3 version, which can be downloaded and manually installed from the main GitHub page.

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QualCoder 3.2 released

The latest version of QualCoder has been released. This contains error fixes and more functionality.

The main change is that the VLC software is not required to be installed for QualCoder to run. Without VLC you can work with text and images. For audio and video coding QualCoder does require VLC to be installed.

The other main change is that a bibliography can be imported in the RIS format.

Further improvements to the REFI-QDA codebook and project exchange formats have been enacted.

How to get the latest release?

Obtain source code or executable binaries for Windows 10/11 and Ubuntu 22 from:

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QualCoder compares favourably to proprietary qualitative data analysis software

I am not sure how calculates the comparisons but here are a few graphs comparing QualCoder to the big proprietary names in qualitative data analysis. These screengrabs of the SaaSHub graphs were from 15 Dec 2022.

It is nice to see that QualCoder does compare favourably primarily as a research tool. Even if it does not have all the functionalities of the big names. A lot of thanks goes to the end users who keep putting forward good ideas and giving feedback to make using QualCoder an easier and better experience. Also for suggesting extra functionalities that had not been thought of before. It is fascinating to see how many different workflows people use when doing their research.





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Latest updates

The latest code that will eventually become a 3.2 release has the capacity to load references from a text file. They must be in the RIS format which most reference managers can export to.

Additionally, you will be able to change the overall style of QualCoder through options in Settings.

Blue style

Orange style

Dark with rainbow style

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