Coding of textual responses of statistical surveys, if not made completely manually, can be done in a completely automated way ("automated coding" or batch coding – AUC) or with computer support ("computer assisted coding" or interactive coding – CAC). The decision which is the most suitable coding approach to be adopted in a survey depends on four correlated factors: the survey technique, the amount of data to be coded, the interview length and the structure of the classification. The combination of these factors can be analysed in two alternative situations, deriving from the moment of the implementation of the coding activity: coding phase during data collection (possible only for CAC) or coding phase after data collection. Elements to define a strategy are provided.
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