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The Coding Manual for Qualitative Researchers

The Coding Manual for Qualitative Researchers

Third Edition
  • Johnny Saldana - Arizona State University, Professor Emeritus, USA, Arizona State University, USA
Additional resources:

November 2015 | 368 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

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Johnny Saldaña’s unique and invaluable manual demystifies the qualitative coding process with a comprehensive assessment of different coding types, examples and exercises. The ideal reference for students, teachers, and practitioners of qualitative inquiry, it is essential reading across the social sciences and neatly guides you through the multiple approaches available for coding qualitative data.

Its wide array of strategies, from the more straightforward to the more complex, is skillfully explained and carefully exemplified providing a complete toolkit of codes and skills that can be applied to any research project. For each code Saldaña provides information about the method's origin, gives a detailed description of the method, demonstrates its practical applications, and sets out a clearly illustrated example with analytic follow-up. 

Now with a companion website, the book is supported by: 

  • SAGE journal articles showing coding being applied to real research
  • Sample transcripts highlighting coding techniques
  • Links to CAQDAS sites to introduce relevant software
  • Practical student exercises Links to video and digital content  

This international bestseller is an extremely usable, robust manual and is a must-have resource for qualitative researchers at all levels.

Click here for a listing of Johnny Saldaña's upcoming workshops.

Chapter One: An Introduction to Codes and Coding
Chapter Two: Writing Analytic Memos About Narrative and Visual Data
Chapter Three: First Cycle Coding Methods
Chapter Four: After First Cycle Coding
Chapter Five: Second Cycle Coding Methods
Chapter Six: After Second Cycle Coding
Appendix A: A Glossary of Coding Methods
Appendix B: A Glossary of Analytic Recommendations
Appendix C: Field Note, Interview Transcript, and Document Samples for Coding
Appendix D: Exercises and Activities for Coding and Qualitative Data Analytic Skill Development


Companion website

Free resources on the companion website:

  • Links to CAQDAS sites to introduce relevant software
  • A practice code list 
  • SAGE journal articles showing coding being applied to real research
  • Sample transcripts highlighting coding techniques
  • Practical student exercises 
  • Flashcard glossary 

This book is a must for all fieldworkers who work closely with interview,  narrative,  and visual materials.  It is thoughtful, well-written,  and inclusive. The appendices  alone are invaluable!

Norman K. Denzin
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Saldaña’s Coding Manual for Qualitative Researchers has become an indispensable resource for my teaching, my doctoral students, and my own research. The 3rd edition, with new approaches and new examples from a broad array of researchers and disciplines, will be even more indispensable.

Steven Harvey
Social and Behavioral Interventions – Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

This third edition clarifies marvelously the process of coding qualitative data, provides wonderful examples of the over 25 coding methods, recognizes the ambiguity in the analysis of qualitative data, and reinforces the richness inherent in qualitative data.

Molly Engle
Professor and Extension Evaluation Specialist, Oregon State University

The Coding Manual is the go-to handbook for all qualitative researchers. This latest edition offers a thorough discussion on analyzing visual data and writing analytic memos, making this the most comprehensive text on the coding process.

Jennifer Roberts
St. Louis University, School of Education

The book is as an important source for gaining an overview of current procedures and practices of structuring, interpreting and presenting qualitative data. The book helps students to become acquainted and re-visit their coding skills, and beyond that, their ways of interpretation and relating themselves to their data. The book is a source of inspiration as well as reference guide for conducting your own research and writing about your interpretive steps.

Dr Sven-Ove Horst
Department of Media & Communication, Erasmus University Rotterdam
May 7, 2019

Saldana is the first and last word on coding for qualitative researchers and I strongly encourage all my qualitative students and colleagues to purchase it. I have recently purchased Atlas.ti software, which I will teach the PhDs how to use - so will be recommending the book even more strongly.

Professor Teresa Carmichael
Wits Business School, University of Witwatersrand
December 1, 2016

The book is an excellent resource for students doing qualitative research. It guides the beginner researcher step-by-step on the different technology and how to do coding of qualitative data.

Dr Ensa Johnson
Centre for Augmentative and Alternative Communication, University of Pretoria
November 16, 2016

Specific and detailed support for analysing qualitative data- hard to find a text that matches it.

Mrs Linzi McKerr
Education , Worcester University
October 7, 2016

An excellent book. Extremely clear and comprehensive explanations, very useful examples.

Ms Melody Harrogate
EHS, Derby univeristy
September 30, 2016

Not adopted for the MA course as in parts, quite technical. However, we have recommended this text for our research degree students taking the research methods compulsory course (30-50 entrants PA).

Dr Rachel Granger
Business School, Middlesex University
August 17, 2016
Key features
New to the Third Edition of The Coding Manual for Qualitative Researchers:
  • Over 30 techniques are now included
  • A brand new companion website with links to SAGE journal articles, sample transcripts, links to CAQDAS sites, student exercises, links to video and digital content
  • Over 30 techniques are now included
  • A brand new companion website with links to SAGE journal articles, sample transcripts, links to CAQDAS sites, student exercises, links to video and digital content 

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter One: An Introduction to Codes and Coding

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ISBN: 9781473902497

ISBN: 9781473902480