Methods of Collecting Primary Data

On 19 Feb., 2019

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Methods of Collecting Primary Data

Primary data is the first hand data collected by the researchers for conducting the research. The primary data is original and applicable by nature. The following the methods of collecting primary data.

Method # 1 Questionnaire

Under this method, the questionnaire is sent to the respondents via mail with a request to complete and send the questionnaire back. The questionnaire includes the number of questions. It is a low cost method that can be used to survey the entire population. Moreover, it is free from biases as the answers are the respondent’s own words. The method is also useful in cases where investigator cannot personally reach to respondents. However, there are certain limitations of using questionnaire method. The respondent may be uneducated or lack cooperation. There is less probability that the respondent will complete the questionnaire and mail it back. 

Method # 2 Investigation or Direct Personal Interview

Under this method, the investigator personally collects all the information through observations. The data can be collected from the complete enumeration or a sample, depending on the requirement. For example, for collecting data for the death rates, the investigator has to collect data sex wise and region wise for getting accurate results. This is called complete enumeration method of collecting information. However, for collecting data for the particular disease such as dengue, there is no need to narrow down the research field. This is called sample based method of extracting information.

Method # 3 Indirect Oral Investigation

As the name suggests, the investigator collects information by interviewing the person who is closely related with the original person. This method is useful when the concerned person is unwilling to give the interview. This method is useful in accident cases where a list of questions is prepared and witnessed are asked to answer these questions. This method is less time and money consuming. However, the results obtained are may not be reliable as the information is obtained from the third party rather than the concerned person. While using this method, the information must be crosscheck by the investigators.

Method # 4 Schedules sent through investigators

This method is useful in market research where the paid investigators are hired to collect primary data. The investigators make use of the schedules and approach the respondents in a very respectful manner. After approaching the respondents, the investigator fills the schedule as per the answers given by the respondents. This method is widely used as it gives accurate results. However, the investigators should be the experienced one or some sort of training should be given by them to collect data and other relevant information properly from the respondents. But, this method is costly as remuneration is given to the investigators.

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