Technology is advancing every day and so is the world we live in. Manyresources are now available online, and as a result, obtaining information has become much easier for everyone. This has benefited students too. These days, most scholars are not only in school studying but also in the corporate world doing parttime jobs. What exactly does this mean? Students don’t have enough time anymore to do their assignments. Those pursuing demanding courses like statistics, especially, may require help once in a while because the concepts covered here are quite complex. Our statistics help has been of great advantage to students, as it has enabled them succeed in their academia. Whether you are engaged somewhere or need to book an online tutoring session, we are ready to help you navigate through this tough subject and record good grades.
Statistics is a field of mathematics that allows data scientists to collect, analyze, and interpret data. Data can be defined as a set of information used to describe a specific entity. A good example of data can be height of students in class, number of patients a hospital receives in a day, weight of babies born with a certain condition, etc. These parameters are your data.
Methods Of Collecting Data
There are many different techniques and tools that you can use to gather data. These include:
- Interviews: This is one of the best data collection methods. We all can create a list of questions, but an interview to be effective, one must know exactly what to ask. Being efficient in your interview is crucial, as in-person interviews are one of the most expensive data collection method. But you can make them less costly by conducting them through web chats or over the phone. One great advantage of interviews is that unlike some data collection methods like surveys, interviews allow for open ended questions. Also, the answers you get are more customizable. Take help with statistics and learn more about conducting effective interviews.
- Observation:In this method, you collect information without asking questions. Observation is a more subjective technique, as it requires you to add your judgment to the data. For instance, if you are studyingthe cars that visit a particular garage at a given time, you can choose to add your judgment by stating the type of car, color, etc. instead of just generalizing the number. Basically, observationwill help you detect unique parameters in datathat may not be easy to pinpoint using other data collection methods. For professional assistance on this data collection method, use our online statistics help portal.
- Existing records and documents: Sometimes you can get all the information you need without asking anyone anything. Records and documents based research involves using existing data for a given study. These can be financial records, meeting minutes, attendance records, etc. and they are one of the most inexpensive methods of collecting data. However, the accuracy of this technique depends on how much data is available and how consistent it is.
- Focus groups: This method involves observing, interviewing, or surveying a group of people who have something in common. When conducting a focus group study, the researcher can ask the participants to watch a certain video or presentation, for instance, and then discuss what they saw before answering interview or survey questions. This methodgives you a chance to askopen ended questions like, “What did you learn?” “Is there something we can do to improve our services?” To learn more about how focus groups work, collaborate with our expert statistics helpers.
- Oral history: This one is just like the standardinterview only that it focuses more on events that happened in the past. An oral history data collection method would be great when studying the effects of a pandemic in a given region. It can help explain exactly what happened, especially if the participants were there when the events transpired.
- Surveys and questionnaires: These are used to ask closed ended questions. To be effective questionnaires and surveys need to be planned carefully. This is because, the answers will be provided based on how the question is framed. In other words, the participant can only answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ without adding any personal information. A poorly designed survey or questionnaire will therefore not lead the study anywhere. This method of data collection is often less costly than interviews but the data obtained will not be effective if the questions are not framed correctly.
Qualitative Data Collection
Quantitative data collection methods like surveys and questionnaires can answer a question “Do you think this is a good product?” for instance, but will not answer the question “Why?” That’s why researchers use qualitative methods too. Qualitative method considers many factors when collecting data in order to help the researcher understand the raw data more comprehensively. This methoddoes more than just collecting and manipulating data; it examines factors such as the feelings and thoughts of the people involved in the research. When data is viewed this way, researchers are able to:
- Describe the environment: When researchers understand where observations take place, they are able to add more meaning to the collected data
- Identify study participants: If a research is focused on aspecific group of people, whether depending on demographics, age, gender, or other factors, knowing this information can help add value to the recorded numbers.
- Explain the content of the research: Sometimes, the activities involved in a study like how the research was conducted, how messages were sent and delivered may help shed some light about the study.
- Interact with the people involved in the research: Interactions between study participants and the person conducting the research can help provide useful information about the data collected.
- Become aware of any external factors: Unexpected events can affect the outcomes of a research. Qualitative data collection technique enables researchers to identify any anticipated event and weave it into the results narrative. This is almost impossible to achieve when using quantitative data collection method alone.
There are three important methods used to collect quantitative data today. These include:
- Ethnography: This is the study of human cultures and societies. Simply put, it studies how human beings from different cultures and societies live their day-to-day lives. This approach helps the researcher fill in the blanks when the respondent is not able to articulate the reasons for his/her behavior or decision. Instead of asking why a participant behaves in a certain way, the researcher uses his/her own observation to figure out the “why” behind these behaviors. To learn more about ethnography, take help with statistics from our experts now.
- Grounded theory: This method uses observations, interviews, and materials the participants use to understand their way of life.
- Phenomenology: Sometimes, people’s true colors will only emerge when they are tested. As such, phenomenology measures how people behave when going through certain events. A good example of phenomenology would be to study the experiences of a group of people involved in a flood or any other natural disaster. For you to effectively study data from events like this, you must put yourself in the participants’ shoes to understand how accurate the data is. Understanding the participants helps researchers comprehend their data better and get better results.
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