Although some of NVivo's advanced features are for dedicated qualitative researchers, NVivo can also provide significant help with any kind of analytical writing.
In this guide we focus on literature reviews. The same techniques are potentially applicable to:
Recently, the names of different NVivo versions have been a bit confusing. The publisher QSR calls the current version of NVivo simply NVivo, or NVivo (Release 1). In the Deakin Software Library, this version is called NVivo 20.
Compared to previous versions, NVivo 20 has a more modern interface and some streamlined functionality.
NVivo's core functions have worked the same way for some time. Help resources based on previous versions may look different in places, but they continue to be relevant as most changes are cosmetic.
Caution: Projects created or used in the current version of NVivo—NVivo (Release 1) or NVivo 20—are NOT compatible with the previous version, NVivo 12.
There are important compatibility limitations when working across both Mac and Windows platforms. We discuss these in further detail on the next page of this guide.
This guide was originally written for NVivo 12. An update is in progress.
In this guide, we refer to the most recent version of NVivo as NVivo (Release 1).
Almost all of the functions in NVivo (Release 1) were available in NVivo 12, and the most noticeable updates are to the user interface. If you are using NVivo (Release 1), please be mindful that some of the screenshots and menu options shown in our guide may have changed.
Click the play button below to watch the video Analysis in NVivo (Windows) (01:00).
Click the play button below to watch the video on Analysis in NVivo 12 Mac (00:57).
Additional resources are available from NVivo's developer QSR and third parties.
QSR's NVivo Youtube channel contains a wealth of training videos.
Here are links to three videos that relate specifically to literature reviews.
Publications by QSR introduce important aspects of NVivo for literature reviews/analytical writing:
For users interested in NVivo's more advanced features, QSR also offers:
Here are some recent in-depth videos covering NVivo and literature reviews:
A popular tutorial entitled Improving Your Literature Review with NVivo 11 for Windows (42:00) was made by Ana Garcia of La Trobe University Library in 2015.
More recently, Dr Alan Shaw (Strategic Planet, 2017) made twin video guides directed at literature reviews: