Secondary sources

HideShow resource information

Secondary sources:

Official statistics:

-Quantitative data created by the government/ other official bodies.

-Examples includem statistics on : Birth/death/marriage.dovirces.

-The ten yearly consensus of the entire UK population is a major source of official statistics.

-Examples of many other statistics can be found in the annual publication of 'social trend.'

-Governments use official statistics in policy making.

For example, statistics on the age structure of the population help the government to plan future pension provison.

There are several types of source for the information that is used to create official statistics:

1. Registration: For example: the law requires parents to register births.

2. Official surveys: such as the Census or the general household survey.

3. Administrative records: of state agencies such as hospitals, courts and schools. These include records of illnesses/ convictions. truancy.

As well as offical statistics produced by government, various non-state organisations also produce non-official statistics.

For example: Churches produce membership  and attendance statistics whilst the charity shelter produces statistics on homelessness.

Both the advantages and disadvantages of official statistics stem from the fact that they are secondary data.

They are not collected by sociologists but by offical agencies for their own particular purposees which may differ from those of the sociologist.

Pratical advantages:

They are a free source of huge amounts of…


No comments have yet been made

Similar Sociology resources:

See all Sociology resources »See all Sociological research methods resources »