Qualitative Diary Methods - Online (join a waiting list)

Organised by

University of Liverpool


Dr Laura Radcliffe and Dr Leighann Spencer




University of Liverpool
L69 3BX


View in Google Maps  (L69 3BX)


Dr Billie-Gina Thomason


Qualitative Diary Methods (QDMs) are increasingly recognised as a valuable and important method in social science research, due to concern across disciplines with an overreliance on cross-sectional research, a lack of focus on temporality, and the need to capture evolving processes and the daily dynamics of phenomena.

QDMs offer a range of innovative approaches and tools for social science researchers that enable us to capture and subsequently begin to understand, how phenomena are experienced in the moment, as well as how they evolve over time. However, they remain a methodological blindspot in much postgraduate research training.

This workshop will provide researchers with a new range of methods to add to their methodological toolkit, as well as support and guidance in managing some of the challenges associated with these methods, including insights into qualitative diary (longitudinal) analysis approaches.

The course covers:

  • Intro to Qualitative Diary Methods (QDMs)
  • When and why to use different qualitative diary methods
  • Addressing challenges associated with QDMs
  • Ethical considerations when using QDMs
  • Designing pen and paper diaries
  • Designing audio and video diaries
  • Designing photo-elicitation diaries
  • Designing qualitative ‘App’ diaries
  • Analysing data from QDMs: Moving beyond thematic analysis

By the end of the course participants will:

  1. Have a comprehensive understanding of the benefits and challenges of QDMs, and how to manage these challenges
  2. Be able to evaluate when different QDMs should be used and why
  3. Be able to design appropriate QDM research projects to address particular research questions
  4. Have a critical awareness of particular ethical issues associated with the use of QDMs
  5. Have a comprehensive understanding of analytical approaches suited to data gathered using QDMs

Prgramme Outline:

Welcome & Introductions 10:30 am

Session 1: 10:45 – 12:45

  • An introduction to diary methods
  • When and why to use different qualitative diary methods
  • Collecting qualitative diary data: challenges and practical considerations
  • Ethical considerations and participant reflexivity
  • Sampling approaches for qualitative diary studies
  • Pre- and post-diary interviews
  • Audience Q&A and Task: Design a diary for your own research project/ interest – Justify design choices in line with sample, data needs and research questions.

Lunch Break 12:45 – 1:45

  • Opportunity for informal discussions and networking

Session 2: 2:00 – 4:30

  • Designing pen and paper diaries: Tips & Examples
  • Designing audio and video diaries: Tips & Examples
  • Designing photo-elicitation diaries: Tips & Examples
  • Designing qualitative ‘App’ diaries: Some Examples
  • Analysing data from qualitative (longitudinal) diary projects: Moving beyond thematic analysis - Thematic Trajectory Analysis (TTA)
  • Audience Q&A & Group Task; Group discussions around proposed diary projects, including analytical approaches. Feedback from participants and presenters.

4:30 pm Conclusion & Finish

The course will run: 10:30am – 4:30pm


Entry (no or almost no prior knowledge)


The fee per teaching day is: • £30 per day for students registered at UK/EU University. • £60 per day for staff at UK/EU academic institutions, UK/EU Research Councils researchers, UK/EU public sector staff and staff at UK/EU registered charity organisations and recognised UK/EU research institutions. • £100 per day for all other participants In the event of cancellation by the delegate a full refund of the course fee is available up to two weeks prior to the course. NO refunds are available after this date. If it is no longer possible to run a course due to circumstances beyond its control, NCRM reserves the right to cancel the course at its sole discretion at any time prior to the event. In this event every effort will be made to reschedule the course. If this is not possible or the new date is inconvenient a full refund of the course fee will be given. NCRM shall not be liable for any costs, losses or expenses that may be incurred as a result of its cancellation of a course, including but not limited to any travel or accommodation costs. The University of Southampton’s Online Store T&Cs also continue to apply.

Website and registration


North West


Diary Methods, Photographic research, Multimodal Research, Qualitative diary methods (QDMs) , , , , Qualitative longitudinal research , , , , Qualitative shortitudinal research , , , , Qualitative diaries , , , , Video diaries , , , , Video research , , , , Audio diaries , , , , App diaries , , , , Photo elicitation

Related publications and presentations

Diary Methods
Photographic research
Multimodal Research

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