Descriptive Research Techniques



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Descriptive Research Techniques Survey Techniques Week 6
,Study Materials for Module 6 Study Book Module 6
Cavana – Ch 10: pp. 225-6; 239-46. Ch 14: pp 351-60 Selected Reading 6.1 & 6.2 (only business students) Jennings – Ch 8: pp. 227-44; 254-62. Ch 10: pp.328-38 Additional reading from Burns & Bush for section 6.4 & 6.6 (mailed) Coakes and Steed Ch 4 (oncampus students); Ch 3 (external students) ,Lecture overview Descriptive research design
Survey method Advantages & disadvantages
Data collection modes Survey Methods Factors to consider when selecting a survey method Types of surveys Combination survey methods Factors determining the choice of a particular survey method Increasing response rate techniques
Ethical issues Report writing Summary Tutorial ,Descriptive Research Design What is it
Research that uses a set of scientific methods and procedures to collect raw data and create data structures that describe the existing characteristics of a defined target population or market structure.
To describe the characteristics of relevant groups ie users of a shopping centre; users of a theme park To estimate the % of units in a population exhibiting a certain behaviour To determine perceptions of product/service characteristics by a specific group ie friendliness and is this variable an important choice criteria Estimates of the proportions of a population with a certain characteristic Discovery of associations among different variables To make specific predictions ie. to predict the level of sales for the next 5 years for hiring & training purposes; prediction of the number of inbound tourism for the next 5 years ,Purpose Major proportion of market research
Most common technique – Survey method describes characteristics of a population or phenomenon eg demographics & sociodemographic profile
psychographics attitudes intentions preferences decision making & purchase behaviour statistics on inbound & outbound travel purpose of travel ,Two types of Descriptive Research studies Cross – sectional studies
a sample of elements selected from the population of interest that are measured at a point in time – sample survey (also called one-shot studies) Longitudinal studies a fixed sample of elements that is measured repeatedly through time Panel (true) – repeated measures of the same variables over time
Panel (omnibus) – variables that change from measurement to measurement ,Survey Method Is based on a structured questionnaire given to a sample of a population and designed to elicit specific information from respondents.
Referred to as – quantitative survey method (large no. of responses suitable for statistical analysis) ,Advantages of survey methods accommodate large sample sizes; increases generalisability of results
standardisation – all respondents react to questions worded identically; response options (scales) are the same administrative ease – much simpler than a focus group/ indepth interview; development of questionnaire is a more complex process than the administration ability of tapping into factors & relationships that are not directly observable ie attitudes, feelings, preferences tabulation and statistical analysis of data subgroup differences ,Disadvantage of survey methods difficulty of developing accurate survey instruments (questionnaire design)
limits to the in-depth detail of data lack of control over timeliness, & potential low response rates difficulties to determine if respondents are responding truthfully misinterpretation of data results & inappropriate use of data analysis procedures ,Data collection modes a person interviews the respondent
electronic assisted or directly asks the question of the respondent the respondent completes a questionnaire ,Survey methods mail
mail interview, mail panels
personal ( interviewer–completed & self-completed eg. National census) personal

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research techniques

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