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MAXQDA operates through activation

  • You activate the codes and documents that you want to work with.
  • In order to use the Retrieved Segments window, you must activate at least one code and one document. 
  • Whatever you activate turns into a red arrow sign.

To activate:

  • Click on the circle next to the name of the code.

Here the first three codes in the Code System have been activated and have changed into red arrows:

  • If you want to reset your activations, you click on the Reset Activations tab,   , on the top of the Code System menu. 
  • Activating documents works the same way. You click on the gray circles and they change into red arrows. Below, the first two documents are activated. 

In order to use the Retrieved Segments window:

  • You need to activate at least one code and at least one document.  Remember that you must have coded text from that document for it to show up. 
  • Once you do that, the relevant coded segments will appear in the Retrieved Segments window. 
  • Here, one document and one code has been activated and you can see the results in the Retrieved Segments window. 

  • If you click on the side coding stripe symbol, you will be taken to that coded text in the Document Browser.


  • You can always export the results of your activations in the Retrieved Segments window as a word or excel document. You click on the icon that you want to get the exported results that you are interested in. 

Here is what results look like in a Word document:

  • Here is what results look like in an excel document.


Reset Activation

When you run the analysis of your codes and documents, you want to make sure that you are activating what you need to. An easy thing to do is to Reset Activations, which resets across all windows at once. 

To do a reset:

  • Go to the Home menu.
  • Then go to Reset Activations.