(Solved Homework): Identify at least three methods of data collection strategies in social research; give pros and cons for each, What was

Identify at least three methods of data collection strategies in social research; give pros and cons for each, What was your top 2 or 3 learning “ah-ha” moments from reading the “Helpful Reference Material” Research Design document?

Expert Answer

 Three reliable and often used methods of social surveys are:
  • Surveys
  • Interviews
  • Focus Groups
Method of Data Collection Pros Cons
  • Easy, fast and very wide spread data can be collected.
  • Apart from person to person contact tools like emails, social media can also be utilized.
  • Privacy can be maintained.
  • Responses may be biased or superficial.
  • Designing a survey is difficult and can lead to erroneous results.
  • Surveys need to be pilot tested for validity and reliability.
Interviews (Face to Face).
  • Detailed questions can be asked.
  • Nonverbal issues and conclusions can be drawn from gestures and facial expressions.
  • Literacy may not be an issue.
  • Expensive, require lot of efforts and time consuming.
  • Interviews on sensitive issues can be prohibitive and challenging.
  • Prone to interviewer bias.
Focus Groups
  • Can be used to explore complex issues.
  • Can be used to develop hypothesis.
  • Useful while exploring issues like culture, health, society etc.
  • Lack of Anonymity, potential of Group Think.
  • Difficult to balance diversity in group,
  • Issue of one or two persons leading the group.

From reading the material while doing my research on this issue I find the lot of research documents and articles are available but on going through, I found they are not based on deep analysis of many surveyors and surveys, they are mostly based on reading different articles.

Not many were anywhere quoting real survey data and the real experience of preparation for survey and experiences during executing the surveys.

Thus the information available is quiet limited.

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