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Conducting Primary

Research

When research goes beyond Google…

Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…
Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…
Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…
Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…
Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…
Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…
Conducting Primary Research When research goes beyond Google…

What is Primary research? How do I get started?

involves collecting data about a given subject directly from the real world

any type of research that you go out and collect yourself

Examples: surveys, interviews, observations

A good researcher knows how to use both primary and secondary sources in her writing and to integrate them in a cohesive fashion.

researcher knows how to use both primary and secondary sources in her writing and to integrate
researcher knows how to use both primary and secondary sources in her writing and to integrate
researcher knows how to use both primary and secondary sources in her writing and to integrate
researcher knows how to use both primary and secondary sources in her writing and to integrate
researcher knows how to use both primary and secondary sources in her writing and to integrate
But I’m not an expert! With some careful planning, primary research can be done by
But I’m not an expert! With some careful planning, primary research can be done by
But I’m not an expert! With some careful planning, primary research can be done by

But I’m not an expert!

With some careful planning, primary research can be done by anyone, even

students

But I’m not an expert! With some careful planning, primary research can be done by anyone,
But I’m not an expert! With some careful planning, primary research can be done by anyone,
But I’m not an expert! With some careful planning, primary research can be done by anyone,
What types of projects benefit from primary research?  a local problem that may not
What types of projects benefit from primary research?  a local problem that may not
What types of projects benefit from primary research?  a local problem that may not

What types of projects benefit from primary research?

a local problem that may not have been addressed before

The proposed schedule change in YCSD

writing about a specific group of people or a specific person

The Tabb High School football team vs. basketball team

to confirm or dispute general results

Student perspective vs. adult perspective

team vs. basketball team  to confirm or dispute general results  Student perspective vs. adult
team vs. basketball team  to confirm or dispute general results  Student perspective vs. adult
team vs. basketball team  to confirm or dispute general results  Student perspective vs. adult
types of primary research  Interviews:  one-on-one or small group question and answer sessions
types of primary research  Interviews:  one-on-one or small group question and answer sessions
types of primary research  Interviews:  one-on-one or small group question and answer sessions
types of primary research  Interviews:  one-on-one or small group question and answer sessions

types of primary research

Interviews:

one-on-one or small group question and answer sessions

provide a lot of information from a small number of people

useful when you want to get an expert or knowledgeable opinion on a subject.

from a small number of people  useful when you want to get an expert or
from a small number of people  useful when you want to get an expert or
types of primary research  Surveys:  a form of questioning that is more rigid
types of primary research  Surveys:  a form of questioning that is more rigid
types of primary research  Surveys:  a form of questioning that is more rigid
types of primary research  Surveys:  a form of questioning that is more rigid

types of primary research

Surveys:

a form of questioning that is more rigid and that involve larger groups of people

provide a limited amount of information from a large group of people

useful when you want to learn what a larger population thinks

amount of information from a large group of people  useful when you want to learn
amount of information from a large group of people  useful when you want to learn

types of primary research

Observations:

taking organized notes about occurrences in the world

provide insight about specific people, events, or places

useful when you want to learn more about an event without the bias of an interview

specific people, events, or places  useful when you want to learn more about an event
specific people, events, or places  useful when you want to learn more about an event
specific people, events, or places  useful when you want to learn more about an event
specific people, events, or places  useful when you want to learn more about an event
specific people, events, or places  useful when you want to learn more about an event

Where do I start?

Consider the following questions when beginning to think about conducting primary research:

What do I want to discover?

How do I plan on discovering it? (This is called your research methods or methodology)

Who am I going to talk to/observe/survey? (These people are called your subjects or participants)

How am I going to be able gain access to these groups or individuals?

What are my biases about this topic?

How can I make sure my biases are not reflected in my research methods?

What do I expect to discover?

topic?  How can I make sure my biases are not reflected in my research methods?
topic?  How can I make sure my biases are not reflected in my research methods?
Ethics of primary research  You should have permission.  Let your subjects know whether
Ethics of primary research  You should have permission.  Let your subjects know whether
Ethics of primary research  You should have permission.  Let your subjects know whether

Ethics of primary research

You should have permission.

Let your subjects know whether your research results will be anonymous or

not. (Surveys = yes, Interviews = no)

will be anonymous or not. (Surveys = yes, Interviews = no)  It you are interested
will be anonymous or not. (Surveys = yes, Interviews = no)  It you are interested

It you are interested in analyzing something that is available publicly (e.g. commercials) you do not need permission.

You don’t want to do anything that would cause physical or emotional harm.

Be sure your own personal biases and opinions do not get in the way; give both sides fair consideration.

Be sure you are not taking advantage of easy-to-access groups of people.

Be sure that you accurately represent what you observed or what you were

told.

Common Pitfalls

Over generalizing : never assume that what you have found is what will always exist

Biased methodology: If you create a biased survey or ask biased questions, you’ll get biased results

Correlation ≠causation: just because two results have a relationship between them does

not necessarily mean that one causes another to occur

Other related factors: It is very difficult to be able to study all the factors

Know what data is valid: participants in your research may not take it seriously

Reported behavior vs. actual behavior: What people report as their behavior might not

actually how they behave

 Reported behavior vs. actual behavior: What people report as their behavior might not actually how
Creating Good Interview and Survey Questions
Creating Good Interview and Survey Questions
Creating Good Interview and Survey Questions

Creating Good Interview

and Survey Questions

Creating Good Interview and Survey Questions
Creating Good Interview and Survey Questions
Surveys & Interviews  If you are conducting primary research using surveys or interviews, one
Surveys & Interviews  If you are conducting primary research using surveys or interviews, one
Surveys & Interviews  If you are conducting primary research using surveys or interviews, one

Surveys & Interviews

If you are conducting primary research using surveys or interviews, one of the

most important things to focus on is creating good questions.

When creating good questions, there are a few things you will want to AVOID…

focus on is creating good questions.  When creating good questions, there are a few things
focus on is creating good questions.  When creating good questions, there are a few things
1. Biased questions  Biased questions are questions that encourage your participants to respond to
1. Biased questions  Biased questions are questions that encourage your participants to respond to
1. Biased questions  Biased questions are questions that encourage your participants to respond to

1. Biased questions

Biased questions are questions that encourage your participants to respond to

the question in a certain way. They may contain biased terms or are worded

in a biased way.

They may contain biased terms or are worded in a biased way.  Biased question: Don't
They may contain biased terms or are worded in a biased way.  Biased question: Don't

Biased question: Don't you agree that students learn much better when teachers let them work in groups?

Revised question: Do students learn more effectively through collaboration?

2. Questions that assume what they ask

These questions are a type of biased question and lead your participants to

agree or respond in a certain way.

Biased question: There are many people who believe that students learn best through collaboration. Are you one of them?

Revised question: Do you agree or disagree that students learn best in groups?

collaboration. Are you one of them?  Revised question: Do you agree or disagree that students
collaboration. Are you one of them?  Revised question: Do you agree or disagree that students
collaboration. Are you one of them?  Revised question: Do you agree or disagree that students
collaboration. Are you one of them?  Revised question: Do you agree or disagree that students

3. Double-barreled questions

A double-barreled question is a one that has more than one question

embedded within it. Participants may answer one but not both, or may

disagree with part or all of the question.

Double-barreled question: Do you agree that students learn better in groups and that teachers should let them collaborate on quizzes?

Revised question: Do students learn best through collaboration? (If the

participant responds yes): Should teachers encourage collaboration on

quizzes?

learn best through collaboration? (If the participant responds yes): Should teachers encourage collaboration on quizzes?
learn best through collaboration? (If the participant responds yes): Should teachers encourage collaboration on quizzes?
learn best through collaboration? (If the participant responds yes): Should teachers encourage collaboration on quizzes?
learn best through collaboration? (If the participant responds yes): Should teachers encourage collaboration on quizzes?
4. Confusing or wordy questions  Make sure your questions are not confusing or wordy.
4. Confusing or wordy questions  Make sure your questions are not confusing or wordy.
4. Confusing or wordy questions  Make sure your questions are not confusing or wordy.

4. Confusing or wordy questions

Make sure your questions are not confusing or wordy. Confusing questions will

only lead to confused participants, which leads to unreliable answers.

Confusing questions: What do you think about groups? (This is confusing because the question isn't clear about what it is askinggroups in general? Students working on group projects? Same-gender groups?)

Do you believe that the current way in which students take quizzes at school

is a problem or can be improved because students really do learn better in

groups or do you believe that the way we take quizzes now is ok? (This question is both very wordy and leads the participant.)

Revised question: What is your opinion of group quizzes?

question is both very wordy and leads the participant.)  Revised question: What is your opinion
question is both very wordy and leads the participant.)  Revised question: What is your opinion