Round Table Analysis is a method developed by Helen Parkin in STEER, designed for the analysis of large qualitative data sets; each group of conversations collected through the Listening Rooms is analysed in this way. The Round Table Analysis and Listening Rooms methods work well together, as they are both appreciative in nature and positive in their approach to the research.

The Method

The Round Table consists of individuals who are likely to be in a position to make positive change for the cohort represented in the data. These people could be course leaders, student representatives, module leaders, senior leadership, or external stakeholders. All those around the table have an equal voice, as does the data.

Each stakeholder receives a section of the data, 3-5 transcripts, at least a week prior to the session. The data is distributed in such a way that each transcript is read by at least two people, to reduce bias and to enable the analysis of the data from different perspectives. The facilitator of the Round Table Session reads of the data and leads the stakeholders on a guided thematic discussion.

The Round Table Analysis sessions are run over the course of three hours, where stakeholders are emerged in the students’ voices and co-create the findings and recommendations. Analysis the data in this way results allows the stakeholders to take ownership of the outcomes and stakeholders leave feeling motivated to take the work forward and inspire positive change at the University.

At the end of the session, each stakeholder will receive a copy of the live document, which is co-produced during the discussion, and a two-page summary report detailing the findings and recommendations.

Stakeholder Feedback

“The session provided a catalyst to have a conversation with colleagues about an area of work and intellectual issues.”

“Stakeholders felt they were alerted to the nuances and sensitives around [the experiences of BAME students], a lot of which cannot be seen in the metrics.”

“[It was] fascinating to see what the students focused on and what they did, as their concerns are not always the same as ours.”

“Our outcomes were very positive in that students were very appreciative and praising of their experience. The Round Table Analysis session helped us enormously having objective peers with no connection to the students reduced the potential for bias and helped us to recognise the richness of the data.”