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Research Methodology: Data Collection


Title: Research Methodology: Data Collection Author: Chan Chang Tik Last modified by: Chan Chang Tik Created Date: 9/7/2006 3:06:37 AM Document presentation format – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Research Methodology: Data Collection

Research Methodology Data Collection
  • Presented by
  • Dr. Chan Chang Tik

Research Process (Recall)

Research Topic
Literature Review
Research Strategy
Negotiating Access
Data Collection
Data Analysis
Project Report
  • Negotiating Access
  • Data Collection

Negotiating Access
  • The following strategies may be used to help you
    gain physical and cognitive access in the form of
    personal entry to an organization
  • Allowing yourself sufficient time.
  • Using existing contacts and developing new ones.

Negotiating Access (2)
  • Strategies to gain access
  • Clear account of purpose and type of access
  • Overcoming organizational concerns.
  • Identifying possible benefits.

Negotiating Access (3)
  • Strategies to gain access
  • Using suitable language.
  • Facilitating ease of reply.
  • Developing access on an incremental basis.
  • Establishing your credibility.

Sufficient Time
  • Physical access may take weeks or even months to
  • You may have to necessitate several telephone
    calls simply to make the contact with the
    appropriate person. You may send emails too.
  • Once a contact is made it may take a number of
    weeks before you conduct the actual interviews,
    engage in observations or use the secondary data.

Existing Contacts
  • Use your existing contacts to gain access.
  • The use of known contacts is suitable for case
    study strategy and non-probability sampling.

Existing Contacts (2)
  • Using your work placement organization for your
    research project.
  • To develop new contacts you may consider
  • Professional association
  • Trade union
  • Employers association
  • Chamber of commerce

Purpose of Research
  • You must be very specific of your requirements.
  • Send an introductory letter requesting access.
    Your letter should
  • Outline your proposed research and requirement.
  • How the person being contacted might be able to
    help. Refer to Appendix C.

Organizational Concerns
  • The concerns may fall into three categories,
  • Concerns about the amount of time or resources
    (avoid multiple requests).
  • Sensitivity (avoid presenting the organization in
    a bad light).
  • Confidentiality of data and anonymity of the
    organization or individual participants (make
    these assurance repeatedly).

Organizational Benefits
  • Applicability of proposed research to the
  • Report of your findings.

Suitable Language
  • Avoid terms that may be perceived as threatening
    or not interesting. For example
  • Research ? learn from your experience
  • Publish ? write an account
  • Interview ? conversation
  • Your language should be appropriate to the person
    you are contacting so that it does not sound
    patronizing or just boring.

Ease of Reply
  • Use a simple pro forma for recipients.
  • Include stamped, addressed envelope or a fax
    number or an email address.

Incremental Access
  • To overcome organizational concerns about
    time-consuming and multiple requests, consider
    incremental access.
  • This strategy allows you the opportunity to
    develop positive relationship with the person who
    grants you initial access.
  • Incremental access is time consuming.

Establish Credibility
  • Once you have gained physical access you have to
    establish your credibility in order to gain
    cognitive access.
  • Provide assurances about confidentiality and
  • Consider ethical issues.

Data Collection
  • Questionnaire techniques
  • Interviews
  • Observations

Questionnaire Techniques
  • When do you use questionnaire?
  • Types of questionnaire
  • Designing individual questions
  • Administrating the questionnaire

When to Use Questionnaire?
  • Suitable for descriptive or explanatory research.
  • Descriptive research
  • Using attitude and opinion questionnaires
  • Explanatory research
  • Cause-and-effect relationships between variables
  • Not suitable for exploratory research that
    requires large numbers of open-ended questions.

Types of Questionnaire
Types of Questionnaire (2)
  • Your choice of questionnaire is influenced by the
    following factors
  • Importance of reaching a particular person as
  • Importance of respondents answer not being

Types of Questionnaire (3)
  • Factors affecting choice of questionnaire
  • Size of sample required, taking into account the
    likely response rate.
  • Types of questions you need to ask to collect
    your data.
  • Number of questions you need to ask to collect
    your data.

Designing Individual Questions
  • Open Questions
  • Used widely in exploratory research where you
    require a detailed answer or when you want to
    find out what is uppermost in the respondents
  • Open questions are difficult to analyze and you
    are advised to keep them to a minimum.

Designing Questions (2)
  • List Questions
  • List questions offer the respondents a list of
    responses any of which they can choose.
  • The response categories can include yes/no,
    agree/disagree and applies/does not apply.
    You can also add a catch-all category of other.

Designing Questions (3)
  • Category Questions
  • Category questions are designed so that each
    respondents answer can fit only one category.
  • Useful to collect data about attributes and
  • You should have no more than five response

Designing Questions (4)
  • Ranking Questions
  • A ranking question asks the respondent to place
    things in rank order. This means that you can
    discover their relative importance to the
  • Keep the list of items to seven or less.

Designing Questions (5)
  • Scale Questions
  • Scale questions are often used to collect
    attitude and belief data.
  • We usually used five-point Likert scale.
  • You can also capture the respondents attitude
    using a 10-point numeric scale.

Good value for money
Poor value for money
Designing Question (6)
  • Another variation of the scale questions is the
    bi-polar scale often used in consumer research to
    rate a simple object or idea. This scale has a
    pair of opposite adjectives.

Open Question
  • An example of an open question
  • What do you think of INTI Online?
  • .
  • .
  • .

List Question
  • An example of a list question
  • Please tick the box provided for places you have
    visited in Malaysia. For places you have not
    visited, please leave the box blank.
  • KLCC
  • Museum
  • Pulau Redang
  • Ipoh
  • Other
  • (please state)

Category Question
  • An example of a category question
  • How often do you login to INTI Online?
  • never login
  • 1 4 times per week
  • 5 9 times per week
  • more than 10 times per week

Ranking Question
  • An example of a ranking question
  • Please number each of the factors listed below in
    order of importance to you in your choice of a
    course. Number the most important 1, the next 2
    and so on. If a factor has no importance at all,
    please leave blank.
  • Lecturer teaching
  • Course fees
  • Library facilities
  • Lab
  • Other
  • (please specify) .

Scale Question
  • An example of a scale question
  • For the following statement please tick the box
    which matches your view most clearly.
  • Agree Neutral
  • I find the course
  • interesting.

Administrating the Questionnaire
  • Online questionnaire through email
  • Contact recipients by email and advise them to
    expect a questionnaire.
  • Email questionnaire with a covering letter (avoid
  • Email the first follow-up one week after.
  • Email the second follow-up after three weeks.
    This should include another covering letter and a
    copy of the questionnaire.
  • A third follow-up can also be used if time allows
    or your response rate is low.

Postal Questionnaire
  • Ensure that questionnaire and letter are printed,
    and envelopes addressed.
  • Pre-survey contact through email, phone or post.
  • Post the survey with a covering letter, and a
    return envelope.
  • Post (or email) the first follow-up one week
    after using a postcard.
  • Post the second follow-up after three weeks. This
    should contain another copy of the questionnaire,
    a new return envelope and a new covering letter.
  • A third follow-up can also be used if time allows
    or your response rate is low. For this it may be
    possible to use telephone calls or even call in

Delivery and Collection Questionnaire
  • Ensure that all questionnaires and covering
    letters are printed and a collection box is
  • Contact respondents and advise them to attend a
  • At the meeting hand over the questionnaire with a
    covering letter to each respondent.
  • Introduce the questionnaire and stress its
    anonymous or confidential nature.
  • Ensure that respondents place their completed
    questionnaire in a collection box before they
    leave the meeting.

Telephone Questionnaire
  • Ensure that all questionnaires are printed.
  • Where possible contact respondents by post, email
    or telephone advising them to expect a telephone
  • Record the date and time of call and whether or
    not the questionnaire was completed.
  • You should note any specific times that have been
    arranged for callbacks.
  • For calls that were not successful, you should
    note the reason such as no reply or telephone
  • Make callback calls at the time arranged.

  • Interview approach is suitable for questions
    which are complex or open-ended, or large in
  • In an explanatory study you need to conduct
    interview to infer causal relationships between
  • You are likely to include interviews in an
    exploratory study too.

Interviewing Competence
  • Opening the interview
  • Questioning
  • Listening
  • Testing and summarizing understanding
  • Behavioural cues
  • Recording data
  • Appropriate language

Opening Comments
  • Thanked the participants.
  • The purpose of the research, its funding and
    progress to date were briefly outlined.
  • Right to confidentiality and anonymity was
  • Participants right not to answer any question
    was carefully emphasized.
  • Offer of any written documentation.
  • Nature of the outputs to which the research was
    intended to lead.

  • You can use open questions which are designed to
    encourage the interviewee to provide an extensive
    and developed answer.
  • Open questions are likely to start with one of
    the following words
  • What
  • How
  • Why
  • Example Why did the organization introduce
    five-day week?

Questioning (2)
  • Probing questions can be used to explore
    responses that are of significance to the
    research topic.
  • Probing questions can also be used to seek
    explanation where you do not understand the
    interviewees meaning.
  • Use of reflection may also help you to probe a
    theme by paraphrasing their words.
  • Specific and closed questions may be used to
    obtain specific information or to confirm a fact
    or opinion.

Listening Skills
  • Listen and build understanding so as to explore
    with the interviewee.
  • Deliberately holding back own thoughts which
    would divert or compete with the others.
  • Provide the interviewee with reasonable time to
    develop their responses.

Test Understanding
  • Summarizing an explanation provided by the
  • If possible, ask the interviewee to read thorough
    the factual account that you need to produce of
    the interview.

Interviewers Behaviour
  • Comments or non-verbal behaviours which indicate
    any bias in your thinking should be avoided.
  • Your posture and tone of voice may encourage or
    inhibit the flow of the discussion.
  • Sit slightly inclined towards the interviewee and
    adapt an open posture, avoiding folded arms.

Recording Data
  • A full record of the interview should be compiled
    as soon as possible after it has taken place.
  • Permission should always be sought to tape record
    an interview. You have to explain why you need a

  • Participant observation
  • Structured observation

Participant Observation
  • Researcher attempts to participate fully in the
    lives and activities of subjects and thus becomes
    a member of their organization or community.
  • Very commonly used in sociology and anthropology.
  • You can adopt the participant observer role as an
    existing member of an organization you work with.

Participant Observation (2)
  • What participant observers do? There are four
    roles to choose from, namely
  • Complete participant
  • Complete observer
  • Observer as participant
  • Participant as observer
  • Data Collection

Complete Participant
  • You attempt to become a member of the group
    without revealing your true purpose to the group
  • Aware of ethical issues.

Complete Observer
  • You do not take part in the activities of the
    group, you merely observe without revealing your
    identity to the group.
  • You may observe the consumers behaviours at the
    checkout of a supermarket.

Observer as Participant
  • You observe the participants of the group without
    taking part in the activities in the same way as
    the real participants.
  • Your identity as a researcher would be clear to
    all concerned.

Participant as Observer
  • Your purpose as a researcher is revealed.
  • Both you and the subjects are aware of the fact
    that it is a fieldwork relationship.

Data Collection
  • Recording must take place on the same day as the
    fieldwork in order that you do not forget
    valuable data.
  • Data may be classified as
  • Descriptive observations
  • Narrative account
  • Descriptive Observations
  • Physical setting
  • Key participants and their activities
  • Events and their sequence
  • Emotions involved
  • Narrative Account
  • Function as investigative journalist and go
    beyond to develop a framework of theory to
    explain your research setting.

Structured Observation
  • It is systematic and it deals with quantifying
  • Data collected can tell you how often things
    happen rather than why they happen.
  • You can use off-the-shelf coding schedule or
    design your own to collect data.

Thank you