Different Methods of Data Collection in Writing Research Papers

Writing Research Papers

Writing research papers accurately requires that you select the most suitable methods of data collection and data analysis. It is important to note however the suitability of a research method in a certain study does not mean it is flawless. This article highlights some methods of data collection useful in collecting data for writing research papers, their strengths and weaknesses.

Observation

Strengths

    • It presents an opportunity to get more reliable data than you could get through asking questions
    • It is an excellent way of studying behavior

  • Most suitable technique if the results of your research are observable

Weaknesses

  • It prohibits the researcher from interacting with research subjects through speechImage 2
  • The researcher must set aside time to observe and record observations

Interviews

Strengths

  • You can get responses from all respondents i.e. both literate and illiterate
  • The interviewer has the opportunity to probe for answers and ask for clarifications if need be
  • It helps the researcher to better understand the opinion, attitude and beliefs of the respondents

Weaknesses

  • Reliability is largely based on the integrity of the researcher there are no instruments set aside to given this.
  • Costly in terms of special instruments are required for recording and transcribing.

Focus groups

Strengths  

  • The group setting presents a good opportunity to generate important ideas for writing research papers as opposed to interviewing an individual.
  • It is an effective tool for understanding attitudes and beliefs from respondents simultaneously
  • It relies on oral communication, hence the participants do not need to know how to read and write.

Weaknesses

  • Demands for a strong facilitator to coordinate the team and ensure all members participate
  • It requires time to facilitate formation of a focus group, and set schedules for the participants of the focus group
  • It is a costly method to use for research data for writing research papers, as it requires special tools for recording interview and transcribing.

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