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Chapter 8 Data Collection Instruments

Narayan Kafle Liberty College

Data Collection Instruments
Methods of collecting primary data, Questionnaire designing, Research interview, Exploration and use of secondary data, Coding, editing, and tabulating.

6 hrs

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Data for Research

Research is the quest for credible data. Data are the building blocks of research. Nature of Data Data are not only in figures and statistical form but are also in the form of reports, video tapes, pictures, etc. Types of Data Subjective and objective data Quantitative and qualitative data Primary and secondary data Facts and Opinions
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Sources of Data
Secondary Sources:
refers to those for already gathered by others

Primary Sources:
are original data gathered by the researcher for the research project at hand. Primary data are those, which are collected afresh and for the first time, and thus happen to be original in character.
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Important consideration for data collection

Cost Implementation Time Is the sample available Response Rate Technology Available Sensitive Questions Size and complexity
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Sources of Secondary Data

Internal (Ready to use; further processing required) MIS External (Published materials, computerized database;)

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Evaluating Secondary Data

Quick collection in low or no cost Longitudinal studies Comparative data

Inappropriateness: Collected for other purposes Unit of measurement may be different Lack of accuracy: No control over data quality Access may be difficult Nkafle, 2013 Lack of standard classification

Sources of Primary Data

One-to-one (face-to-face; Telephone) One-to-many (focus group)

Self Administered (Online; mailed; delivery and collection) Interviewer Administered (Telephone; Interview schedule)

Participant (Qualitative) Nkafle, 2013 unstructured) Non-participant (structured;

Sources of Qualitative Data



Observational field notes Photographs Videos

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Electronic Data Collection

Email and chat-rooms Web-based Computer assisted personal interviewing (CAPI) Send CDs to read and record responses

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Questionnaire is a formal list of questions designed to gather response from respondents on a given topic.

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Questionnaire Design
the key to successful questionnaire design are:
Information desired What your purpose demands? Types and form of questions Structured (fixed alternative items) Semi-structured (open; closed) Unstructured (focused; depth; non-directed) Length of the questionnaire Wording Order and sequence Physical appearance (get-up; layout; appearance)
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Components of Questionnaire
Explanation Information
Cover letter

Basic Information
Comment-on items (open ended)

Classification Information
Biographic variables

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Questionnaire Administration:
Questionnaire can be either self-Administrated or filled in by an interviewer.

Performance measures of researcher:

Response rate Contact rate Completeness rate

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Evaluation of Questionnaire
Advantages of Questionnaire:
Less expensive Greater anonymity

Disadvantage of Questionnaire:
Low response rate Low applicability Possibility to consult others Lacking of getting opportunity to clarify the question

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Principles for Questionnaire Writing


Double-barreled (two-in-one) questions; job and family Ambiguous questions; Regularly. Recall-dependent questions; Math teacher of 8th grade Leading questions; I assume Socially undesirable questions Personal questions; smoking habits Sensitive question; Cheating in exam
Mind the vocabulary and grammar End the questionnaire in a gentle and friendly manner

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Steps in Questionnaire Construction

Identify the data need Formulate the questions Organize the questionnaire Pre-test the questionnaire

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Develop the survey questionnaire or the interview protocol or the data collection sheet/ observation performa and submit it to your assigned supervisor (Either NK or SG): Assignment Due: Next Week Last Class

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