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Semantic networks from qualitative interview transcripts using NodeXL Pro

by PhD. Verónica Espinoza-González

This tutorial shows how to generate semantic networks from qualitative interview transcript files using the NodeXL Pro tool.  1

To produce semantic networks in NodeXL Pro, we will first convert the interview transcript file to a network file, for this we will use the open source tool called nocodefunctions, which was developed by Clément Levallois. 2

Why is it useful to generate a semantic network of our data?

A semantic network is made up of words that are linked to other words. These links are created when words frequently appear side by side in a collection of documents or messages. Semantic networks reveal the relationships between ideas embedded in the text collection. Semantic network maps can reveal the ways in which certain ideas are more central or the ways in which some ideas are grouped together with others.  1

Step 1: Open the page nocodefunctions. As mentioned above, this tool will allow you to convert the interview transcript to a network file and then import it into NodeXL Pro.

Step 2: Open the transform text into network option.

This function breaks down a text into terms and expressions and converts it into a graph called a semantic network or co-occurrence network. It analyzes text line by line and determines words and expressions that tend to coexist, forming a network.

It works with texts written in a wide variety of languages (including texts in the non-Latin alphabet). The feature follows the principles of unsupervised learning, which is a type of machine learning. 2

Step 3: Select your transcription file depending on the format (txt, pdf, csv, Excel files, Google Spreadsheet).

Step 4: Select Open File to upload your file.

Step 5: Select Read the data in the file (s) and wait for the process to finish.

Step 6: Select Compute.

Step 7. Select the corresponding language of your file containing the transcript, then press if you need more parameters (this is only if you want to make some additional adjustments), finally press Compute.

Step 8. Select the download gexf file option.

Step 9: Open your NodeXL Pro tool and import the gexf file downloaded in the previous step.

Step 10: Once the file is imported, apply the Tutorial-Semantic Network data recipe. Learn all about NodeXL Pro data recipes and task automation here.


  1. NodeXL Pro Tutorials [Internet]. Social Media Research Foundation. [cited 24 October 2021]. Available in:
  2. Explore your texts by turning them into networks [Internet]. Nocode functions. [cited 23 November 2021]. Available in:


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