Qualitative and quantitative data

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  • Qualitative, Quantitative, Primary and Secondary Data
    • Quantitative
      • Expressed numerically
      • Gather numerical data in form of scores from participants e.g number of words person can recall on memory test
      • Data analysed systematically, converted into graphs/charts
      • Methods: Closed questions, structured interviews, lab experiments
      • Easy to gather and analyse information
      • Low in EV- may not represent real life
    • Qualitative
      • Expressed in words
      • May be written descriptions, transcripts, extract from diary, advert/picture
      • Interpretation of language from interview/observation (unstructured)
      • Method: open questions
      • Greater external validity- easier to generalise
      • May be bias- hard to draw correlations
    • Primary
      • Information obtained first hand by researcher for purpose of research project
      • Often gathered directly from participants as part of an experiment, self report or observation
      • More valid- first hand information
      • Takes a long time to gather data
    • Secondary
      • Information that has already been collected by someone else and pre-dates current research project
      • Includes work of other psychologists/government statistics
      • Method: Meta-analysis
      • Quick and easy to obtain
      • Less valid- may be outdated/ inaccurate


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