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How to Avoid Mistakes in Primary Data Collection Using Dissertation Questionnaires

Secondary as well as primary data collection both have their own merits and demerits, and no one can be prioritised over the other. The secondary method helps researchers determine the most authentic way to solve a scientific query; however, the primary data collection allows researchers to collect information valuable in solving a specific type of research query. Moreover, the most sought-after way to collect first-hand data in social sciences is by constructing a questionnaire. Probably the most common reason behind the popularity of the questionnaire is that it allows the researchers to collect both qualitative as well as quantitative data.

In other words, it may contain both closed and open-ended questions to collect data in textual as well as digital form. But to collect the best quality data by structuring the questionnaire, we need to avoid some simple mistakes. The article has provided a brief description of some common mistakes you need to avoid for primary data collection by using a dissertation questionnaire.

Dissertation questionnaire- A brief introduction:

Simply, a dissertation questionnaire is a list of all questions that can ask about the situation under discussion from all possible aspects. Moreover, the exact nature of the questions depends on the aims and objectives of the research projects. It is commonly used to know about people’s experiences, opinions, and attitudes to lay the foundation of research on only authentic data. It helps researchers solve a scientific problem that has very little reported data. Additionally, it is one of the cheapest methods of primary data collection, and the most expensive one is setting an experiment to conduct in vivo or in-vitro studies.

Common mistakes to avoid in primary data collection using dissertation questionnaire:

Usually, by knowing only the advantages of using the dissertation questionnaire as a primary data collection method, students opt for this method to conduct their undergraduate research. Moreover, a lack of information may result in faulty questions with low-quality responses. Though different students of varying backgrounds commit different types of mistakes, still a few common ones include:

  • The questionnaire questions do not match the research goals:
  • Inability to define the right respondents for collecting data:
  • Vague questions that confuse respondents:
  • Improper sectioning of the closed and open-ended questions:
  • Adding too many complicated words that are not reader-friendly:

These are some common mistakes that, if avoided, can help the researcher in only collecting quality information. However, if after reading this article you come to know why your previous dissertation research using the questionnaire design could not score well, then you must take a lesson from it and avoid all these mistakes to refine the quality of your master’s dissertation. However, if you know your mistakes just a few weeks before the final submission of the dissertation, then you think about seeking dissertation help online UK. Lets’ see the ways to avoid some of these mistakes in the following section:

Align your research questions with your research goals:

How persistent you are about attaining your research goals has a direct effect on the quality of questionnaire questions. The best tip to ensure alignment between questionnaire questions and research goals is to first make a theoretical framework. Moreover, the questions that are a reflection of the theoretical framework will surely collect the best quality data.

Define the best participants for your research:

Not every participant that first comes to your mind will be the best participant for your scientific research. That’s what all primary researchers must need to understand. Moreover, the tip to identify the best participant for your research is to search for similar literature and find if there is any other option available as a participant in your research. Thus, it would help if you kept in mind your respondents while making the questionnaires.

Make clear questions so respondents can respond appropriately:

No matter how carefully you select the participants for primary data collection, they will fail to respond to you properly unless they understand what you want to know by asking a question. Thus, to make your questions clear, you must first measure its readability rate. Additionally, try to make it simple and concise so the reader can quickly understand what it means and give an answer that you can easily interpret.

Selecting the correct type of questions (open-ended or closed-ended):

Another important thing that highly affects the quality of your research is the type of questions used for primary data collection. Remember, even before you start making questionnaires, you should select your research topic. Basically, you can add either open-ended or close-ended questionnaires; however, adding both in some questionnaires by making different sections is still possible. In case you selected both, then keeping their ratio the same is a tip that will help you make a balanced questionnaire, and it will be easy to interpret in later stages.

Avoid using the technical terms so the reader may not get confused:

Again, how much this mistake affects the quality of your primary data collection by dissertation questionnaire is highly dependent on your area as well as the nature of the research. For example, if your research aims are to collect information from a layperson, then the questions must be drafted in very simple words. Even you can also use the common language to make questions easy to read, and these can be translated into American or British English later on.

Final thoughts:

In a nutshell, primary data collection gives confidence about the authenticity of the information collected through their direct participation. So, the collection of this first-hand data by using questionnaires is the cheapest way, but students often commit some mistakes that restrain them from gaining the benefits from the questionnaire design of the study. Thereby, the article has highlighted five common mistakes that one needs to avoid. Additionally, it also shared some simple tips to avoid them all. By following the tips provided in this article, you can surely take your dissertation to the next level, so you must keep all of them at your fingertips.

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