Search for contacts, projects,
courses and publications

Techniques and tools for analyzing visuals


Lucchesi F.

Course director

Tarnutzer S.

Course director


Images and videos are central elements or even default parts in communication flows – be it when we message with friends and our families, when we look at posts on social media, or when we think of advertisements and news media coverage. In fact, visuals are key for e.g., effectively communicating information, guiding attention, or influencing attitudes and opinions. Importantly, visuals can influence how we affectively experience, understand, and evaluate events, political issues, or people. At the same time, visuals are open to multiple interpretations and challenging to grasp analytically.

This course provides practical analytical skills for qualitative and quantitative analyses of visuals. We will do hands-on analyses of selected visual material, thereby we will particularly focus on how to analyze smaller and bigger sets of visual data published on social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, or TikTok. We will also explore possibilities as well as limits and troubles of automated visual analysis.


By the end of the 14h-course, students will have 

  1. an overview of key methods and tools to analyze visual data within qualitative and quantitative research designs, and
  2. analytical skills to apply such methods and to put them into practice, for example in their Bachelor's thesis.

Teaching mode

In presence

Learning methods

The course will be held as a weekly course (2 hours per week for 7 weeks). Lectures will be based on input presentations by the course director as well as hands-on analyses in a dialogic and interactive setting. The lectures will be held in English. References with suggestions for readings will be provided during the first session of the course. Attendance in the lectures is strongly recommended to follow the discussion in class.

Examination information

Evaluation will be based on a final written test in which students will do a short exemplary analysis. To successfully pass the course it is mandatory to pass the final written test.