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Research Synthesis

Research Synthesis

An overview of classic Grounded Theory approaches and alternative practices for qualitative data coding, analysis and synthesis.

Objective & Outcomes

Of particular relevance for design researchers, this course provides rigorous, hands-on instruction for how to move from user research data to explanatory frameworks to valid findings and recommendations. This is particularly useful for data rich topics and complex domains where affinity mapping is not an acceptable practice. This course introduces multiple validated methods for coding data with an emphasis on the gold standard, classic Grounded Theory. Students learn how to develop code lists, how to code data of differing media types, and how to conscientiously substitute other approaches when coding is not the best fit for the project.

On completion of this course, students will be able to translate raw data into themes using systematic analytic practices; synthesize data into explanatory frameworks; and identify credible findings, recommendations and design requirements to inform concept development.

Typical Schedule

  • Session 1: Introduction to Coding & Grounded Theory
  • Session 2: Structuring Data: Codes, categories & the coding paradigm
  • Session 3: Interpreting Data: Core categories & thematic analysis
  • Session 4: Generating Design Frameworks: Narrative analysis & case study methods
  • Session 5: Coding Software & Tools
  • Session 6: Design Directions & Design Requirements
  • Session 7: Final Presentations