Research Methods - Sociology

A short overview of research methods in sociology

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Qualitative and Quantitive

Qualitative data

- Deals with descriptions.
- Data can be observed but not measured.
 -Colors, textures, smells, tastes, appearance, beauty, etc.

Quantitive data

- Deals with numbers.
- Data which can be measured.
 -Length, height, area, volume, weight, speed, time, temperature, humidity, sound levels, cost, members, ages, etc.

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Primary and Secondary

Primary Data

Always original as it is collected by the investigator.
Extra precautions are not required.
- Possibility of personal prejudice.

Secondary Data

- Secondary data lacks originality. The investigator makes use of the data collected by other agencies.
- Secondary data are usually in the shape of readymade products.
- Possibility of lesser degree of personal prejudice.

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Social Issues

Social issues are issues that occur in a community of people rather than the actions of a single individual.

Common social issues include poverty, violence, justice, loss of human rights, discrimination, and crime, and usually revolve around conflicting viewpoints and tensions between people who take different stances.

They can also be known as ‘community’ problems as they involve the community.

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Anonymity (Ethical Issues)

Anonymity may be an ethical issue that arises during such study.

Anonymity states that participants in a study should not be identified by name or any other means in a write up of the study they were involved in.

The issue may arise if the participant is shown in the study through photography or personal information that they may not have wished the general public to know.

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