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stevewright1976

Framework matrices / synthesis matrices - extending funcitonality

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OK - so one of the best tools in NVivo for windows IMHO is the framework matrix tool. It's the almost perfect way of creating a synthesis from a selection of quotes. It can do a very similar thing to a matrix coding query but then gives you not a number or a bar chart but the actual data/quotes so you can write a synthesis, create links to originals and both explore and write about the data.

 

BUT

 

Why is it still so limited/hobbled by its past?

 

SPECIFICALLY:

 

You can only use case nodes as rows. Why can't you use thematic nodes or sentiments?

 

SOME BACKGROUND

 

Well in its original form it was a tool for this - writing a case synthesis so you would view the data for a case and then write a summary - you could order the cases based on a dimension for comparison to help spot patters too. (It's all detailed in Ritchie and Lewis - see https://uk.sagepub.com/en-gb/eur/qualitative-research-practice/book237434 with details for NVivo here http://www.qsrinternational.com/nvivo-support/faqs/how-does-nvivo-support-the-framework-method)

 

BUT - WHY LIMIT IT SO MUCH?

 

It has a history - but should history limit us to other potentials that could (surely) be implemented?

 

For example you can hack this by copying or creating nodes for theme or sentiment (or query results etc. etc.) and moving them to cases folder in order to create "thematic" or "sentiment" cases and then create framework matrix from those to enable a framework matrix comparing themes or sentiments or query results x themes. I've been doing just this with large datasets of survey responses where I need to write a summary synthesis for a sentiment against an attribute within a subset of the data. Now that's easy to run as a matrix coding query (rows = sentiments saved as nodes, columns = case classification attributes, filter = topical nodes of interest) but why can't I run the same query via the framework matrix route and have the awesome option of viewing the data for each cell (a la matrix coding query or cell view in framework matrix) and having a space to write a summary of it (a la framework matrix)?

 

This to me would really help in bridging the gap between the power of the matrix coding query tool and the poverty of integrated writing about what is shown.

 

SURELY THIS IS SIMPLE?

 

The entire programming and display framework is already built in to NVivo so hopefully it's just* a case of synthesising the options of a matrix coding query with the display and writing areas of a framework matrix.

 

it might need a new term - synthesis matrix? summary matrix? but i should hopefully enable a synthesis of the strong rationale and theorisation of synthesis that underlies framework matrices with the power of the matrix coding query to enable exploring (for example) sentiment x case attribute filtered by node and then write a report summarising what each cell shows.

 

 

 

*just is a guess here - it could be a nightmare!

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