Analyzing Quantitative Data: From Description to Explanation by Norman Blaikie

By Norman Blaikie

What simple wisdom and talents do amateur researchers in social technology require? How can scholars be helped to over-come `symbol phobia' or `figure blindness'? This beneficiant and regularly insightful e-book is designed for social researchers who want to know what approaches to take advantage of below what conditions, in sensible study initiatives. It accomplishes this with no requiring an in-depth knowing of statistical thought, but additionally avoids either trivializing systems or resorting to `cookbook' concepts. one of the key good points of the publication are:- Accessibility- association of the extensive, frequently bewildering array of equipment of information research right into a coherent and simple scheme of class: varieties of research and degrees of size- Demystification - the 1st bankruptcy unpacks regularly taken-for-granted thoughts comparable to `analysis', `data' and `quantitative'- place of equipment in genuine examine problemsThe e-book is a effective creation to the speculation and perform of quantitative equipment. it's going to fast determine itself as crucial interpreting for college kids doing social study in the course of the social sciences.`With this publication Norman Blaikie keeps his acceptance because the best rapporteur and raconteur of social study method. With many different introductory texts, info research turns into simply an workout unto itself, and scholars (sometimes) discover ways to struggle through the motions with out particularly figuring out why. After operating with Blaikie's textual content, beginner researchers will recognize why quantitative inquiry is necessary' - Ray Pawson, college of Leeds

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Secondary information consists of sources of data and other information collected by others and archived in some form. These sources include government reports, industry studies, archived data sets, and syndicated information services as well as traditional books and journals found in libraries. Secondary information offers relatively quick and inexpensive answers to many questions and is almost always the point of departure for primary research. (Stewart and Kamis, 1984: 1) While there are obvious advantages in using secondary data, such as savings in time and cost, there are also disadvantages.

First, it is necessary to define the concept in terms of the meaning it is to have in a particular research project. For example, age might be defined as ‘years since birth’, and education as ‘the highest level of formal qualification obtained’. Unless there is some good reason to do otherwise, it is good practice to employ a definition already in use in that particular field of research. In this way, results from different studies can be easily compared. The second step is to operationalize the concept to show how data related to it will be generated.

Compared to ratio-level measurement, it is the arbitrary zero that creates the limitations in interval-level measurement. In most social science research, this limitation is not critical; interval-level measurement is usually adequate for most sophisticated forms of analysis. However, we need to be aware of the limitations and avoid drawing illegitimate conclusions from interval-level data. Discrete and Continuous Measurement Metric scales also differ in terms of whether the points on the scale are discrete or continuous.

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