CS Foundation Methods of Data Collection Part – 2
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We are also bringing some theoretical knowledge in the form of these blogs and articles. This article carries detailed information about ‘Methods Of Data Collection – Primary and Secondary’.
Methods of data Collection – Methods For Primary Data Collection
- Direct Personal Observation:
Direct Personal observation is a typical method of collecting Primary Data. Here the investigator directly interacts with the informants, requires their cooperation and enumerates the data. This method provides accurate information as the investigator collects them personally. However, the method is quite costly and time-consuming. So the method should be used when the scope of inquiry is small.
- Indirect Oral Interviews:
Itself name indicates, a Primary Data is collected by indirect methods. Here information is not collected directly from the informants or the source, but by interviewing persons closely related to the problem. The investigator draws ‘a list of questions’ relating to the problem. The information is collected by interviewing persons well associated with the incident. The investigator should cross-examine the informants to get correct information. This method is time-saving and relatively less costly.
- Mailed Questionnaire Method:
The Questionnaire Method is a largely used for collecting Primary Data. In this method, information is collected through a set of questionnaire. Questions in the Questionnaire relate to the problem/inquiry directly or indirectly. The Questionnaire should carry a gentle note explaining the objective of the inquiry, definition of various terms and concepts used there. The success of Mailed Questionnaire Method depends upon the way in which the Questionnaire is drafted. So the investigator must be very careful while drafting a Questionnaire.
- Schedule Method:
In many cases, the informants are largely uneducated and unresponsive, so the data cannot be collected by the mailed questionnaire method. Here the schedule method is used to collect data. The questionnaires are sent through the enumerators to collect information. Enumerators directly meet the informants with the questionnaire. Explain the scope and objective of the inquiry to the informants and solicit their cooperation. The enumerators ask the questions to the informants and record their answers in the questionnaire and compile them. Schedule method is widely used in extensive studies. It gives generally correct results as the enumerators directly collect the information. This method is costly and time-consuming as compared to the mailed questionnaire method.
- From Local Agents:
In many cases, Primary Data is collected from local agents or correspondents. These agents are chosen by the sponsoring authorities. They are familiar with the local conditions like language, communication, traditions, etc. Being on the spot and well acquainted with the nature of the inquiry they are capable of placing reliable information. This method is mostly used by government agencies, periodicals, newspapers, etc. to collect data.
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Methods of data Collection – Methods For Secondary Data Collection
- Published sources:
Some of the important sources of secondary data in this category include the following:
- Publications of the Central and State Governments, Foreign Governments and international bodies like IBRD, IMF, ADB, ILO, UNO, WTO, WHO etc.
- Publications of Semi-Government organization, e.g. Reserve Bank of India Bulletin, Reports on Currency and Finance.
- Publications of CSO and NSS and other research bodies (ICAR & IARI, Delhi).
- Publications of various Chambers of Commerce, Trade Associations, and Co-operative Societies. – Reports of various Committees and Commissions appointed by the Government.
- Unpublished sources:
It covers all those sources of secondary data where records are maintained by business firms or private agencies for their personal use and are provincially available for use by the general public. Data collected by research institutions are also covered in the category of unpublished sources of secondary data.
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