QualCoder is a qualitative data analysis application written in python3 and pyqt5.

QualCoder projects are stored in a Sqlite database. Text files can be typed in manually or loaded from txt, odt, docx, epub and pdf files. Images, video and audio can also be imported for coding. Codes can be assigned to text, images and a/v selections and grouped into categories in hierarchical fashion. Various types of reports can be produced including visual coding graphs, coder comparisons and coding frequencies.

This project has been tested under Ubuntu 19.04, Linux Mint 18.04 Lubuntu 18.04, Windows 10. It has not been throughly tested on Mac OS. Instructions and other information are available here: https://qualcoder.wordpress.com/ and on the Github Wiki.


You will need to have a python3.x version installed. You will also need to have a vlc player installed - for audio and video.


You can install the latest debian package from https://github.com/ccbogel/QualCoder-Debians

You may need to add unstable repos as described at https://www.binarytides.com/enable-testing-repo-debian/

You also need to run this command from the terminal for pdf importing:

sudo python3 -m pip install pdfminer.six

If not using the debian pacakge:

Make the install.sh executable and run the install.sh script from the terminal. Make sure the qualcoder folder is in the same directory as the install.sh script (i.e. as it appears when you download the QualCoder-master folder).



The qualcoder folder should be in the same directory as the install.sh script.

This will install QualCoder in the /usr/share directory and create a launcher. Alternatively move to the qualcoder directory and run the qualcoder.py file in a terminal: python3 qualcoder.py


Install Python3 and VLC or from the Windows Store. On Windows, the bit version of VLC, 32 or 64 must match the bit version of python 3.

Install dependencies in the command prompt:

python -m pip install pyqt5 lxml Pillow ebooklib ply chardet pdfminer.six


py -m pip install pyqt5 lxml Pillow ebooklib ply chardet pdfminer.six

To launch, you can create a shortcut to the qualcoder.py file to start QualCoder.

Alternatively move to the qualcoder directory and run the qualcoder.py file in from command prompt:

python qualcoder.py or py qualcoder.py

Sometimes there are problems recognising the audio/video VLC library file: libvlc.dll
Some solutions are to add the path of the file here: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/42045887/python-vlc-install-problems?noredirect=1


Install Python3 and VLC.

Install the Python dependencies using pip:

pip install pyqt5 lxml pillow six ebooklib ply chardet pdfminer.six

There is no desktop icon launch right now for QualCoder. Open a new Terminal window in the directory and launch with python qualcoder.py.

Another option is shown here https://www.maketecheasier.com/run-python-script-in-mac/. This means you can right-click on the qualcoder.py file and open with --> python launcher. You can make an alias to the file and place it on your desktop.




Future plans


QualCoder is distributed under the MIT LICENSE.

Debian packages

See https://github.com/ccbogel/QualCoder-Debians

Citation APA style

Curtain, C. (2020) QualCoder 1.9 [Computer software]. Retrieved from https://github.com/ccbogel/QualCoder/releases/tag/1.9

Publications using QualCoder

Local–global linkages: Challenges in organizing functional communities for ecosocial justice. Joel Izlar, Journal of Community Practice 27(3-4) 2019

Barriers to Health: Understanding the Barriers Faced by Community Intervention Projects. Vera Landrum, The University of Southern Mississippi 2020, Available from: https://aquila.usm.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1772&context=masters_theses

Framing food geographies. S Ramsay, Masters Thesis, Stockholms Universitet 2020