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Configuring and Editing the Tagging Hierarchy

For each nest, you need to configure a Tagging Hierarchy before tagging that nest's studies. Tagging Hierarchies structure the qualitative content that you extract, and Qualitative Synthesis uses the Tagging Hierarchy as the basis for its structure.

To configure a hierarchy for your nest, follow the steps below. Once you have built the hierarchy, you can move on to tagging studies you have included in your nest.

Configuring Study Tags:

Click “Configure Study Tags” under the Tagging tab:

This will bring you to the Tagging Hierarchy, which will be blank until you have added tags.

2. Create Root Tags

Root Tags are the highest level of the hierarchy, and have no parent tags. These should represent the most general categories of qualitative evidence you are gathering. For example, you could create Root Tags representing the patient population, intervention, comparison group, and outcomes (PICO) or similar, and add in any other concepts of interest (such as Study Design).

To create a new Root Tag, click “Create New Tag”:

Then, name the tag (red outline), but leave the “Parent Tag” drop-down (red arrow) blank. Optionally, add a Description to give details to your team on what a tag represents.

You are now ready to build your hierarchy downward from your Root Tags. Tags should get more specific as they proceed down the hierarchy.

3. Create Child Tags

You can build your hierarchy downward by adding tags below the Root Tags. Click “Create New Tag” and then name your Tag. Connect it to a Root Tag by selecting the relevant tag from the dropdown list. For example, you could nest “Age” as a tag under Patient Population, or “Mortality” under Outcomes, or even nest Outcomes → Adverse Events → Mortality to capture intermediate categories.


Once you have added a child tag, your hierarchy should contain the Root Tag and the tag you created below it. Continue building out child tags until your hierarchy contains a tag for every concept you want to recognize from underlying studies and structure into your Qualitative Synthesis.

Recommendations in Hierarchy Building

To see examples of hierarchies and Qualitative Syntheses after tagging is complete, create and examine a Demo Nest. If you are looking for Best Practices recommendations on what to include in your hierarchy, see here!

Import a Tagging Hierarchy Template

1. Click "Import Hierarchy"

From the Configure Study Tags page, select “Import Hierarchy”


2. Choose a Tagging Hierarchy Template

Select the Template of interest from the list on the left side of the modal. If no Templates are listed, you may need to grant Organizational Ownership to give that nest access to your Organization's Templates.

How to build a Tagging Hierarchy Template

To learn how to build a Tagging Hierarchy Template for your Organization, click here.

3. Import a Hierarchy or Root Tag

Then, decide if you want to import the entire hierarchy (red circle) or only one Root Tag and its children. To select only one Root Tag and its children, select the Root Tag and then click “Import from Root Tag.”

Note: If tags are already present in your Hierarchy, the imported hierarchy will be added to the right of the existing Root Tags.

Editing the Tagging Hierarchy:

After you've begun tagging, you may want to edit the tags you have created. Here are the edit functions that are available on the Configure Tagging Hierarchy page:

The fewer tags you create, the easier it will be to tag underlying studies. Only create the tags that are essential to your Qualitative Synthesis!

1. Change a Tag's Name

To change a Tag's name, go to the Tagging Hierarchy and click on the tag of interest.


Click on the tag and rename the title, and then click “Update”. This change will be applied across all studies in the Nest with that tag.


2. Change Parent Tag

Sometimes, you want to move a child tag to be nested under a different parent tag. To do so, click the tab of interest and click on the drop-down menu under “Parent Tag”. Changing this will link the tag under a different parent tag.


Find the name of the new Parent tag and click “Update”

3. Merge Tags

If you would like to combine multiple tags into one tag, click on the tag that you would like to merge into the other. Use the “Target Tag” menu to find the tag you would like to merge with and then click the “Merge” button.

Why would you Merge tags? Either because they are duplicates or because they are concepts you would like to combine.

4. Delete Tags

Find the tag you would like to delete, Click the “Delete” button on the top right, click the “Confirm” square, then click “Update”. When a tag is deleted in Configure Study Tags, it deletes the tag from the hierarchy and from all studies it has been applied to.

If you delete a single tag that has children, but do not do delete recursively, the child tags will be reverted to Root Tags and you will need to identify new Parent Tags as relevant.

Deleting tags cannot be undone, so do not delete a tag unless you are certain you do not need it!


Recursively Delete Tags

In the Deletion modal, you have the option to delete a single tag or to “recursively” delete. Recursive deletion, unlike single-tag deletion, will delete the tag in question as well as all of its child tags.

To Recursively Delete, select the check-box for “Recursively Delete?” and for “Confirm” before clicking “Delete.” As with deleting single tags, this cannot be undone!

Add Tags on the Fly

If you forget to configure a tag before beginning the tagging process, no problem! You can add tags to your hierarchy 'on the fly'; to learn how, click here.

wiki/autolit/tagging/configure.txt · Last modified: 2022/05/25 15:21 by kevinkallmes