National Centre for Research Methods



'Multi-modal qualitative research'
Plymouth University, 30 - 31 May 2007

Encouraged by the proliferation of multimedia technologies, qualitative researchers may now produce very diverse kinds of data in their fieldwork: field notes, sound recordings (of interviews, conversations or naturally occurring events), photographs (created by participants and/or researchers themselves), video images, drawings, e-mail correspondence, etc. It is important to be critically aware of the opportunities and limitations that these various modes of data create for knowledge generation. How they can we make informed choice between various modes and media? How can various modes be meaningfully combined in research practice? What are the implications of broadening out our tools and technologies?

This two-day workshop will encompass the collection and analysis of multiple modes of qualitative research data. Primarily based on the combined use of textual, visual and audio data this workshop will give participants practical insights into the affordances and limitations of different modes of qualitative data. Participants will have the opportunity to experiment with collecting and analysing different kinds of qualitative data and to consider how they might be combined, both practically and theoretically.

Target Audience

This workshop will be of interest to researchers from a range of social science disciplines, who wish to use diverse recording media in qualitative fieldwork settings

It will suit both experienced and early career researchers. Some previous experience of using at least two different methods of data generation is desirable (e.g. field notes and photographs, or video and sound recordings). The workshop will focus on the interpretation of meaning in the data, through the comparison and combination of different modes of data and different media. It will not provide an introduction to the use of multimedia technologies in themselves.

The workshop will focus on researcher (rather than participant) generated data; therefore participants should be familiar with the basics of ethnographic fieldwork and observation techniques.

Participants should preferably have experience of using some version of software for qualitative data analysis and archiving.


To obtain a draft programme for the workshop click here

Venue Details

Babbage Building Room 217, Plymouth University, Drake Circus, Plymouth. Click here for directions to the University

Details of accommodation in and around Plymouth can be found here.

Please note: We advise you not to book accommodation or travel until your place has been confirmed.

Booking details

Please note: booking is now closed for this event.

We are now taking bookings for this workshop. We have a limit of 20 places for this workshop therefore we are using information provided on the booking form to ensure we have an interesting mix of participants. To download a booking form click here. We will advise you as soon as possible if you have been allocated a place on this workshop. To avoid disappointment should the workshop be oversubscribed, it is our intention that a repeat of the training will be offered again at a later date.

Cancellation and Refunds: A full refund will be given for cancellations in excess of 48 hours notice of an event. Please note that we cannot offer any refunds for places cancelled within 48 hours of the event.


This event is open to all researchers, including postgraduate students and non-academic researchers. The fee is £40 for the two days for UK registered Post Graduate students, £80 for staff at a UK academic institution, ESRC funded researcher or registered charity organisation. For all other delegates the fee is £350 for the two days. Fees include course materials, lunch and refreshments. Unfortunately, we are not able to assist with travel, accommodation or other related costs.


ESRC National Centre for Research Methods
ESRC - Economic & Social Research Council