Questionnaires as a Research Method

  • Created by: Megnicpip
  • Created on: 18-02-18 18:18
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  • Questionaires
    • Ethical Issues
      • Informed Consent
        • Should guarantee their anonymity
        • Need to be clear that there is no wrong answer and are under no obligation to answer
      • Harm to Participants
        • Intrusive and sensitive questions need to be kept confidential
        • Could cause psychological harm
        • Participants are under no obligation to answer
    • Practical Issues
      • Strengths
        • Quick and cheap
          • Can gather large amounts of data
        • No need to recruit or train interviewers because respondents complete it themselves
        • Data is easy to quantify and can be quickly processed to reveal relationships between variables
        • Allow comparisons to be made and enables patterns, trends and cause and effects
      • Weaknesses
        • May need to offer incentives that could add cost
        • Very low response rates can cause inaccurate generalisations
        • Very inflexible
        • Information is limited with brief questions
        • Cannot always be sure if respondents has received questionnaire or that it was completed by them
    • Theoretical Issues
      • Snapshots
        • Fail to show a valid picture
        • Cannot show how views channged
        • Only show the social view at the moment the questionnaire is completed
      • Hypothesis Testing
        • Easier to identify correlations
        • Easier to find cause and effects
      • Detachment and Objectivity
        • Sociologists personal involvement is kept to a minimum
          • Unbiased and so more reliable
        • No way to clarify questions or know how the respondent will answer
      • Validity
        • Respondents may lie, forget or wish to please the researcher
        • By chooisng the questions what is important has already been decided
        • Bending of data is inevitable
      • Reliability
        • Same questionnaire for every participant plus the exact same questions can be re-used
      • Representativeness
        • Wide amount of people
        • Allows more accurate generalisations to be made
        • Low response rate make the data unrepresentativeness


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