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I have several application forms that I am hoping to analyze in NVivo 12. The form was sent in PDF form with spaces available for respondents to type out answers, and then respondents filled them out. When I go to select text, I can text select only the questions, but I am unable to select the responses. Is NVivo not recognizing field responses as text for some reason? Or will I have to convert the documents to different file types in order for NVivo to recognize these as words?

Apologies that I cannot share a screenshot, but the material I'm working with is confidential.

Thank you in advance!


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Hello @DenialCM,

If you can not select responses that would mean those answers recognized as images. 

I am not sure which PDF editor you are using, but I would suggest suggest using OCR feature to export filled PDF forms.

Hope this helps,



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Hi DenialCM, PDF files can have different encoding which may affect how NVivo is able to read them.  You can try encoding the PDF file using other tools, such as the one suggested above, and see if you able to get a PDF file that encodes the form answers as text.  Please then try to import the resulting PDF and see if you are able to code the desired section of the file as text.

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