Wednesday, 28 November 2007 - Australian software developers QSR International this week launched a new web tool to help qualitative researchers to evaluate the analysis software that best suits their project and working style.
QSR International Marketing Director Karen Thomas said ‘Help Me Choose’ was developed from the ground up in consultation with several of the company’s government, commercial and academic clients, including Boston Children’s Hospital in the US, University of Cambridge in the UK and Victoria University in Australia.
“It’s the first and only tool of its type operating in the global qualitative research software field,” she said.
“Our competitors don’t even provide online product feature comparisons, let alone offer a website tool that assesses users’ projects and research methods and offers software recommendations.”
‘Help Me Choose’ is accessed via QSR’s website – www.qsrinternational.com – and allows users to select parameters that apply to their project and approach to analysis – things like project size, materials, analysis process, timeframe, and outputs. The tool uses that information to present the QSR software – XSight or NVivo - that’s most suited to the user’s individual working style or project, and provides an overview of software benefits tailored to their responses.
Ms Thomas said ‘Help Me Choose’ was developed in response to feedback that choosing and evaluating qualitative data analysis (QDA) software was often onerous and time-consuming. She said QSR International partnered with web developers DTDigital to build a tool that would short-circuit this evaluation process, but not alienate people who were unfamiliar with QDA software.
“Qualitative researchers live and breathe words, pictures and video, and a standard survey tool where users tick boxes to get an answer was never going to cut it,” said Ms Thomas.
“Instead a ‘sliding scale’ was developed to reflect scenarios. Using your mouse, you can navigate along a bar to select the statement you most identify with. Our user acceptance testing found the approach appealed to both users already familiar with research software, and those who have no or limited software exposure.”
Ms Thomas said ‘Help Me Choose’ also offered insights into a researcher’s approach to analysis.
“While some of our user acceptance testers were curious just to see what they could learn about themselves, our academic clients have indicated that ‘Help Me Choose’ could be used as an aide in the classroom to teach research students how to assess their own project needs. That’s a very exciting prospect for us.”
‘Help Me Choose’ can be accessed at: (www.qsrinternational.com/products_help-me-choose.aspx).
About QSR International
QSR International is based in Australia, with offices in North America and Europe. Its flagship products – XSight and NVivo – are both designed to help researchers and other people working with non-numerical data to compile, compare and make sense of their information quickly and easily. More than 350,000 users in 90 countries, from market research agencies, government bodies and universities, to tourism, urban affairs and human resources professionals, use QSR research software. QSR International is a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner and the company’s NVivo 7 software was used as a reference project at the Microsoft TechEd 2006 conference in the United States. QSR’s XSight software has also been selected as a finalist for the MRS/ASC Technology Effectiveness Awards in the UK (judged December 2007). This award recognizes technology that contributes to effectiveness in the delivery of research. Information: www.qsrinternational.com.
QSR media contact
David Jarwood, phone: +61-3-5345-7047 / +61-413-288-403 or email: