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Creating transcripts within MaxQDA


Creating time stamps

When transcribing using the MaxQDA built-in transcription tool, it is necessary to record time stamps.

Time stamps can be recorded within MaxQDA as part of the transcription process. They can also be created on their own by right clicking anywhere within a document.

Importing transcripts

If you use an external transcription tool, ensure that transcripts conform to the following rules:

  • Transcripts should be saved as a text file (.txt) and have an identical file name as the media that they are derived from.
  • Leave one blank line between each paragraph.
  • Each paragraph should begin with a timestamp, followed by the speaker's designation.
  • There should be no space before or after the timestamp, and no hashtags (#) should be used.
    • If your transcription software adds these, they can be removed using your text editor's find-and-replace function.
 00:03:40.5Zack: What will digging this hole accomplish for the project?
 00:03:44.3Jim: It will fill a gap in time and space.
  • Ensure that speakers' names are spelled consistently throughout the document.

To import transcripts: 1. Under the Import ribbon, select Focus Group. 2. Select the text file containing the properly-formatted transcript from the file menu.

A new document will be created containing the imported transcript. [image of the document window]

Timestamps will be displayed using the clock icon, and will not be displayed in the text. [zoomed in image of the clock icon]

Speakers' names will be styled bold, and will also form the basis of an auto-code implementation so that the [zoomed in images of the speakers' auto-coding, and of the filters created in the documents and codes windows]

Importing timestamps

MaxQDA 2018 does not play nicely with timestamps. Timestamps can only be imported as part of imported transcripts. They can not be imported on their own or be automatically assigned to transcripts that already exist within MaxQDA.

When importing a transcript containing timestamps, the timestamps must be formatted in the following way: HH:MM:SS.m, with no spaces between the final digit and the text that the time stamp precedes. Example:

 00:00:27.6Zack: Hi, how are you?

Exporting transcripts


Exporting timestamps

A document's time stamps can be displayed as a table and exported as an Excel file, however this information does not indicate where they belong in the text. It may be possible, however, to align an Excel export of time stamps with an Excel export of a document's text (arranged by paragraph). This involves lots of manual work, and consistent recording practices at the time of time stamps's creation.

Merging MaxQDA projects does not preserve time stamps.

At the moment, these time stamps are essentially useless since they will be lost during any merge. However, we keep the original MaxQDA file created for each transcription job with the hope that the developers incorporate more effective tools for handling time stamps in the future. We will

MaxQDA files created for the purpose of transcription should be named in the following way: [Interviewee]_[YYMMDD]_[Version]_[TranscriberInitials]. Example: BrandonOlson-2019-06-06-ZB.mx18. They should be stored in admin/transcripts.

See also

Transcript notation