March 7, 2021

DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENTS

Data are the raw materials for research. Investigators generate data through some processes of measurement, counting, or observation. The tools and techniques to be employed to collect data depend largely on the objectives of the study.

THE BROTHERTON PRESENTS FOUR MAIN DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENTS THE FIRST ONE IS SURVEY.

SURVEY.

RESEARCHERS CAN USE DIFFERENT KINDS OF SURVEYS

TELEPHONE-BASED SURVEYS,

INTERNET-BASED SURVEYS,

QUESTIONNAIRES BASED SURVEYS

SO WHEN WE BUILD A SURVEY, WE NEED TO CONSIDER THE KIND OF QUESTIONS OR ITEMS THAT SHOULD BE PUT INTO IT. GENERALLY SPEAKING, SURVEYS CONTAIN MOSTLY CLOSED QUESTIONS, YES OR NO QUESTIONS, MULTIPLE CHOICE ITEMS, ORLIKERT SCALE QUESTIONS.

THERE ARE TWO MAIN REASONS FOR USING THESE TYPES OF QUESTIONS AND ITEMS IN A SURVEY. FIRST, YES OR NO QUESTIONS, MULTIPLE CHOICE ITEMS, ORLIKERT SCALE QUESTIONS

SURVEYS ARE USED TO COLLECT MOSTLY QUANTITATIVE DATA. BECAUSE SURVEYING IS PRIMARILY USED FOR DESCRIPTIVE PURPOSES, AS A RESULT, WE DESCRIBE SOMETHING, WE GENERALLY HAVE THE INTENTION OF BEING ACCURATE AND PRECISE. AND AS SUCH, QUANTITATIVE MEASURABLE DATA IS A GOOD CHOICE. SECOND, FROM A PRACTICAL POINT OF VIEW, PROBABLY NO ONE WILL BOTHER TO WRITE LENGTHY ANSWERS IN A SURVEY FOR YOU. IF SOMEBODY HANDS ME A SURVEY AND IT CONTAINS OPEN QUESTIONS TO WHICH I MUST WRITE LONG BIG ESSAY TYPE OF ANSWERS, WELL SCREW THAT PERSON, I AM SIMPLY NOT GOING TO BOTHER TO FILL IT OUT.

SO AS A RESULT OF BOTH THEORETICAL AND OPERATIONAL CONSIDERATIONS, SURVEYS TYPICALLY USE CLOSED QUESTIONS THAT RESPONDENTS CAN ANSWER RELATIVELY EASILY AND QUICKLY THERE ARE A FEW IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS WHEN MAKING SURVEY QUESTIONS OR ITEMS:

FIRST, OFFERING GRADATIONS IS USUALLY BETTER THAN JUST YES OR NO. INSTEAD OF ASKING DO YOU LIKE THIS OR DO YOU AGREE WITH THIS STATEMENT OR NOT, WE CAN BETTER ASK TO WHAT EXTENT DO YOU LIKE SOMETHING OR TO WHAT DEGREE DO YOU AGREE WITH A CERTAIN STATEMENT AND THEN OFFER A LIKERT SCALE. NOT ONLY SUCH ANSWERS WILL MORE ACCURATELY REFLECT THE OPINION AND THE PERCEPTION OF THE RESPONDENT, but THEY ALSO OFFER MORE POSSIBILITIES IN TERMS OF DATA ANALYTICAL METHODS.

ANOTHER CONSIDERATION FOR CREATING SURVEY ITEMS IS REALLY JUST TO USE YOUR COMMON SENSE. FOR INSTANCE, IF THEPHRASEOLOGY OF THE SURVEY ITEMS ARE HIGHLY LEADING OR REALLY PROVOCATIVE, THEN WE CAN ALMOST BE CERTAIN THAT THE RESPONDENTS WON’T BE ABLE TO PROVIDE US WITH HIGHLY RELIABLE DATA.

MULTIPLE-CHOICE ITEMS

MULTIPLE-CHOICE ITEMS BUT THE MULTIPLE CHOICES DO NOT EVEN INCLUDE ALL THE POSSIBILITIES THAT MAY EXIST. FOR EXAMPLE — IF THEY ASK ME DO YOU DRINK WATER OR DO YOU DRINKWINE WITH DINNER? WELL, WHAT IF I DRINK BEER WHICH IS NOT EVEN INCLUDED AS AN OPTION. SO REALLY A LOT OF SUGGESTIONS THAT THIS CHAPTEROFFERS ARE JUST COMMON SENSE. SO USE YOUR COMMON SENSE.

INTERVIEWING.

THE SECOND DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENT DISCUSSES IS INTERVIEWING. INTERVIEWS CAN BE

STRUCTURED,

SEMI STRUCTURED,

UNSTRUCTURED.

BROTHERTON ALSO CATEGORIZES FOCUS GROUPS UNDER INTERVIEWING.IF SURVEYS ARE TYPICALLY USED TO COLLECT STANDARDIZED QUANTITATIVE DATA, INTERVIEW IS PRETTY MUCH ON THE OTHER END OF THE SPECTRUM. INTERVIEWS ARE TYPICALLY USED TO COLLECT QUALITATIVE DATA. CONSEQUENTLY – DURING INTERVIEWS ONLY OR MOSTLY OPEN QUESTIONS WILL BE ASKED. INSTEAD OF ASKING –

DO YOU LIKE RESEARCH?WE SHOULD BE ASKING WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT RESEARCH? CAN YOU TALK ABOUT WHAT RESEARCH MEANS TO YOU? WHAT IS YOUR OPINION REGARDING DOING RESEARCH AS A BACHELORS’ STUDENT ETC.

BECAUSE QUALITATIVE DATA COLLECTION IS TYPICALLY ASSOCIATED WITH EXPLORATORY RESEARCH WE’RE NOT INTERESTED IN GETTING JUST A YES OR NO ANSWER OR LIKERT SCALE ANSWER. WE WANT TO TRIGGER QUALITATIVE ANSWERS – PREVIOUSLY UNKNOWN PERSPECTIVES. WE WANT TO LET NEW ISSUES SURFACE THROUGH INTERVIEWING. THAT IS WHY WE WANT TO ASK OPEN QUESTIONS WE WANT TO ASK FOLLOW-UP QUESTIONS. WE ASK CLARIFICATIONS. WE ASK RESPONDENTS TO TELL US MORE. TO EXPLAIN AND ELABORATE FURTHER. THAT THAT IS THE GOAL OF INTERVIEWING.

OBSERVATION.

THE THIRD DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENT IS OBSERVATION.RESEARCHERS CAN CONDUCT OBSERVATION IN DIFFERENT MANNERS —

COVERT

OVERT

QUALITATIVE

QUANTITATIVE,

AS A MERE OBSERVER

AS A PARTICIPANT,

IN A CONTROLLED LAB SETTING

IN THE FIELD.

AS THE RESEARCHERS TYPICALLY CONDUCT THE OBSERVATION THEMSELVES, THEY CAN EASILY DETERMINE HOW BEST THE OBSERVATION SHOULD BE DONE IN LINE WITH THE SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES OF A PARTICULAR RESEARCH STUDY, AS SUCH OBSERVATION IS QUITE A VERSATILE DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENT WHICH CAN BE USED IN ALL RESEARCH TYPES, EXPLORATORY, DESCRIPTIVE, AND CAUSAL.

PROJECTIVE TECHNIQUES.

THE FINAL DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENT IS PROJECTIVE TECHNIQUES. SO THE IDEA HERE IS TO SHOW OR PROJECT SOME KIND OF STIMULUS, EITHER VAGUE OR RATHER EXPLICIT, TO THE RESPONDENT AND YOU ASK THE RESPONDENT TO RESPOND TO THAT STIMULUS. FOR INSTANCE, IF I SHOW YOU AN IMAGE OF SOME SORT AND ASK YOU TO ASSOCIATE IT WITH A HOSPITALITY RELATED EXPERIENCE AND THEN ASK YOU TO DESCRIBE THAT EXPERIENCE, THIS WOULD BE CONSIDERED A PROJECTIVE TECHNIQUE. THE BROTHERTON BOOK PRESENTS THIS INSTRUMENT AS TYPICALLY USED FOR COLLECTING QUALITATIVE DATA AND MENTIONS FIVE MAIN TYPES OF USAGE OF THIS INSTRUMENT —

ASSOCIATE, SHOW A STIMULUS AND ASK RESPONDENTS TO ASSOCIATED WITH SOMETHING.COMPLETION, SHOW THE RESPONDENTS STIMULUS THAT IS INCOMPLETE AND ASK THEM TO COMPLETE IT. CONSTRUCTION, ASK RESPONDENTS TO CONSTRUCT SOMETHING ON THE BASIS OF THE STIMULUS SHOWN. EXPRESSIVE, ASK THE RESPONDENTS TO EXPRESS THEIR FEELINGS AND EMOTIONS ON THE BASIS OF THE STIMULUS SHOWN. AND CHOICE ORDERING, ASK THE RESPONDENT TO ORDER THE SHOWN STIMULUS ON THE BASIS OF IMPORTANCE OR PREFERENCE OR SOME OTHER TYPE OF CRITERION. SO FOR THE PURPOSE OF YOUR OWN BACHELOR DISSERTATION IN YEAR FOUR, I MAY HAVE MANY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR YOU TO CONSIDER GARDING

HOW YOU WANT TO BEST CHOOSE A DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENT, BUT I’M JUST GOING TO MENTION ONE MOST IMPORTANT THING HERE AND THAT IS CHOOSE JUST ONE INSTRUMENT.

I AM NOT A BIG SUPPORTER OF MIXED-METHOD DESIGNS PARTICULARLY IF WE’RE TALKING ABOUT A BACHELOR’S DISSERTATION. I AM OF THE OPINION THAT EACH RESEARCH STUDY SHOULD HAVE A CLEAR SCOPE, ONE STUDY SHOULD BE ABOUT ONE THING. A STUDY SHOULDN’T BE ABOUT EVERYTHING AND ANYTHING WHERE THE RESEARCHER HAS TO COLLECT ALL SORTS OF DATA USING ALL KINDS OF INSTRUMENTS. BECAUSE IF STUDY WERE LIKE THAT, I CAN PRETTY MUCH GUARANTEE YOU THAT THEIR FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS WILL BE ALL VAGUE AND UNCLEAR BECAUSE THE STUDY LIKE THATWILL TYPICALLY LACK FOCUS AND SCOPE. SO IF YOUR STUDY IS LIKE THAT YOU REALLY SHOULD THINK ABOUT NARROWING THINGS DOWN.

6 thoughts on “DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENTS

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