Using Secondary Data

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Crafting Your Future:
Professional Practice and Research
Week 7 – Using Secondary Data
ICTM Module Delivery Team
Weekly Planner
ICTM Module Delivery Team
Wk 7
Steps Description Example Activity Types
Tools that will
support this
activity
1 Research
Design
Key Concepts/Issues: Understand the main concepts
and elements of research design, and the importance
of methodological coherence throughout your own
research design. – Objectives: By the end of this
session students should be able to:
• Identify the full variety of secondary data that are
available
• Appreciate ways in which secondary data can be
utilised to help to answer research question(s) and to
meet objectives
• Understand the advantages and disadvantages of
using secondary data
• Use a range of techniques, including published guides
and the Internet to locate secondary data;
• Apply the knowledge, skills and understanding gained
to your own research.
Students read the Saunders et al.
(2018) chapter 8 before the lecture.
During the lectures the main
concepts of research types and
methods are explained in detail with
examples, followed by group
discussions and activities.
Extra book chapter and learning
material are also made available for
extra reading.
Icon VLE,
Kaltura, Book
Chapters,
Online Material.
2 Lectures and
delivery method
The main concepts of secondary data and a proper
research based on it are explained to, and discuss with
the students.
Presentation, Case/Paper Examples
Kaltura +
Lecture material
on ICON VLE
3 Activity
Group work on different secondary data sources, and
also on different examples of secondary data research.
Groups also review an academic articles, using
secondary data, and discuss their understanding of it.
Group discussion.
Breakout
Rooms in
Kaltura
4 Reflection and
Feedback
Groups summarise their understanding of the
secondary data research examples, present it during
the lecture, and upload it to VLE.
Group presentation, uploaded to
VLE
ICON VLE and
Kaltura
5 Consolidation
and Integration
Students share their views on different types of data,
their sources, and their features..
Students are divided into groups in
breakout room to discuss sample
research, using secondary data.
Kaltura and
ICON VLE
Crafting Your Future – Weekly Planner
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Session Objectives
This session is relevant to Learning Outcome 4: “Apply a
justified systematic approach to research methodology and
demonstrate advanced information skills”. By the end of the
session, you will be able to:
• Identify the full variety of secondary data that are
available
• Appreciate ways in which secondary data can be utilised
to help to answer research question(s) and to meet
objectives
• Understand the advantages and disadvantages of using
secondary data
• Use a range of techniques, including published guides and
the Internet to locate secondary data;
• Apply the knowledge, skills and understanding gained to
your own research
Secondary Data
When thinking about how to obtain data to
answer your research question(s) or meet your
objectives, you can use data that are already
available (i.e. they were collected initially for some
other purpose). Such data are known as
Secondary Data and include both raw data and
published summaries. Once obtained, these data
can be further analysed to provide additional or
different knowledge, interpretations or
conclusions.
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Secondary Data
For certain types of research project, such as those
requiring market or industry reviews, national/
international comparisons, data from a large
number of people, or a historical or longitudinal
study, secondary data is very helpful – and in most
case the only available source.
Secondary Data: Sources
In recent years, the numbers of sources of potential
secondary data (e.g. EU sources, government surveys,
public sector studies, trade statistics, and company
reports) have grown rapidly.
Government departments undertake surveys and
publish official statistics covering social, demographic
and economic topics alongside reports summarising
these.
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Secondary Data: Sources
Government departments undertake surveys and
publish official statistics covering social, demographic
and economic topics alongside reports.
Examples:
https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-transport/about/statistics
https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-education/about/statistics
https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-work-pensions/about/statistics
https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-trade-in-numbers
https://www.ons.gov.uk/
Secondary Data: Sources
Consumer research organisations collect data that are
used subsequently by different clients.
Trade/financial organisations also collect data from
their members on topics such as sales that are
subsequently aggregated, presented and published.
Examples:
https://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/eu-position-in-world-trade/statistics/index_en.htm
https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics
https://www.statista.com/topics/1293/market-research/
https://www.worldbank.org/
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Secondary Data: Sources
Search engines such as Google collect data on the
billions of searches undertaken daily
Even quality daily newspapers contain a wealth of data,
such as reports, interviews, analyses, and infographics.
Examples:
https://hootsuite.com/en-gb/research/social-trends
https://trends.google.com/trends
www.economics.com
www.fortune.com
www.forbes.com
www.wsj.com
www.ft.com
Secondary Data: Sources
Documents such as company minutes, policies, or
plans are available only from the organisations that
produce them, and not always publicly available.
Therefore, access will need to be negotiated.
Examples:
https://hootsuite.com/en-gb/research/social-trends
https://trends.google.com/trends
www.economics.com
www.fortune.com
www.forbes.com
www.wsj.com
www.ft.com
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Secondary Data: Sources
Example
Secondary Data: Sources
For further study, see the list of
secondary data sources shared in the
VLE.
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Class Discussion: Group Task
Search government sites (e.g. the ones shared earlier
in the lecture slides) and explore what type of data
are available there. Choose one of the available data
sets and go through it in detail. Discuss its benefits
and limitation for a researcher.
Secondary Data: Types of Data
Secondary data include both quantitative (numeric) and
qualitative (non-numeric) data, and are used principally in
both descriptive and explanatory research.
They may be structured data, that is organised into a
format that is easy to process, such as in a database or
spreadsheet; or unstructured data, which are not easy to
search or process as, in their current form, they do not
follow a predefined structure.
– Structured data often comprise numerical data.
– Unstructured data usually comprise text, audio and
visual/audio visual data, although they may also include
dates and other numerical data.
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Secondary Data: Types of Data
Secondary Data: Example
Example
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Secondary Data: Advantages
• Less costly: In general, it is much less expensive and time
consuming to use secondary data than to collect the data
yourself, especially where the data can be downloaded as a
file that is compatible with your analysis software.
• Longitudinal studies may be feasible, Due to time
constraints in many research project.
• Availability of comparative data: It can be useful to
compare data that you have collected with secondary data.
• New insights may be achieved: For example a new link
may be found between the business growth and staff
diversity (a relationship, established through secondary
analysis of medical records, that had not been originally
collected with the intention of exploring any such link).
Secondary Data: Disadvantages
• May be collected for a purpose that does not match
your need
• Access may be difficult or costly
• No real control over data quality
• Initial purpose may affect how data are presented
• Aggregations and definitions may be unsuitable
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Reliability and Validity
The reliability and validity you ascribe to secondary
data are functions of the method by which the data
were collected and the source.
You can make a quick assessment of these by looking
at the authority or reputation of the source. Survey
data from large, well-known organisations are likely to
be reliable and trustworthy.
Consequently, their procedures for collecting and
compiling the data are likely to be well thought
through and accurate. Survey data from government
organisations are also likely to be reliable.
Reliability and Validity
For some documentary sources, such as blogs, social
media pages and transcripts of interviews or
meetings, it is unlikely that there will be a formal
methodology describing how the data were collected.
The reliability of these data will therefore be difficult to
assess (and approve).
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Example
Example
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Test your Learning
Source: https://learninglink.oup.com/access/content/brm5e-student-resources/business-research-methods-chapter-14-multiple-choice-questions?previousFilter=tag_chapter-14
Test your Learning
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ICTM Module Delivery Team
Class Discussion: Case Studies
Each group reads one of the examples of secondary
data research, shared in the VLE and discusses how it
worked.
Do you think a similar research can be done for your
Research Essay?
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ICTM Module Delivery Team
Extra study:
Read the relevant book chapters, shared in the
VLE.
Read the sample research papers, shared in
VLE, and discuss the methods used by them
with your classmates.
ICTM Module Delivery Team
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