Last Thursday morning I made a great discovery. The quest was motivated by my desire to use Scrivener as the only place where I keep my .pdf documents for research. The problem is that I like to annotate them in iAnnotate on the iPad. I wanted to know if there was a way to synchronize the .pdf files in Dropbox with the files in iAnnotate. I ultimately discovered how to do this, but made another discovery along the way.
The accidental discovery was Notebooks app for the iPad. It syncs very well with Scrivener, so if I want to write portions of my dissertation on the iPad, I can write it in there and it will automatically appear in Scrivener. That will be very helpful.read more
My Participatory Action Research involves a series of two-hour, large group meetings. I needed to find a way to record these sessions and transcribe them so that I could then upload them into Dedoose–my Qualitative Data software for coding.
Here is how I did it. This is not the only, nor necessarily the best, way to do it, but it worked well for me.
All of these steps are written in the first person. I…
purchased a 16GB SD Card that is dedicated to these audio recording sessions and placed it in the bottom of the Zoom.
plugged the recorder into a long extension cord, plugged the extension cord into the wall, and placed the recorder in the center of the room. We always began our sessions sitting in a circle, so it was well positioned to capture everything.2
turned the recorder on with the power switch on the side.
set the recorder on the “2CH” setting. This allowed it to record from both sides, thus picking up the whole room equally.
pressed the red button once to initialize a new recording. The red light will flash repeatedly to indicate stand-by mode. Pressed the red button A SECOND TIME, to begin recording.3
let the recording run continuously for the whole meeting, even through the breaks. That way I wouldn’t forget to turn it back on. The recorder can handle hours and hours of recording.
pressed the red button to stop recording.
powered off the recorder with the power switch on the side.
removed the SD card from the recorder by pressing it in and letting it pop out.
created a new document in Scrivener titled “Session0* Audio Transcript”.
the beauty of Express Scribe is that a) it automatically enhances the file for voice, and b) it allows you to control the audio file while in your word processing file. Press F5 to play, F6 to stop, F7 to rewind, and F8 to fast forward.
spent hours playing, listening, stopping, typing, rewinding, listening, playing, stopping, typing, ad nauseum, until the entire session was transcribed. I did this for six sessions.
That’s how I recorded and transcribed my large group sessions. Thanks for reading. Happy Research!read more
the fancy little tripod is sold separately. Fortunately, Jonathan had it as well. Thanks, Jonathan! [↩]
the people quickly forget that the recorder is there [↩]
this is crucial. I practiced once in another meeting and forgot this step, thus did not record anything. I’m so glad I practiced! [↩]
this is the software I use to write my dissertation. It is amazing. [↩]
I opened up Dedoose1 today to enter the latest data from my research team and discovered that Dedoose crashed last week and they lost everything since March 11. Whoa! It is a good thing that I put everything in Scrivener before I upload it. This has spooked me, though. I am dependent on digital technology and the cloud storage services like Dropbox and Evernote. My WordPress sites back up every day to Dropbox, but what if that goes down? I need to run backups to a thumb drive as well.read more
my qualitative research software. It is web based and the data are completely stored on their servers [↩]
I have spent the past few weeks on a writing sabbatical from the church to work on my dissertation. Some of the time has been writing new material. Some of the time has been cutting and pasting things I’ve written over the past three years for various papers or in my comprehensive exams and seeing if they fit into my dissertation. I reached a point at the beginning of the week where I realized that I was creating a monster. I was trying to do everything and say everything. My research is an interdisciplinary study, so it covers a vast amount of material. The greatest danger of this type of thing is that it can be a mile wide and an inch deep–academically speaking.read more