2. Review the
1. Define the
Three Parts to Effective
Analysis and Reports
Step One- Define the Problem
Select a topic for study- politics,
economy, Obama Presidency, etc.
(Develop operational definitions of key
concepts: Operational Definition-
definition stated in terms of
Choose a suitable topic and discuss
(select one as a class to use)
• Economic issues
• Political issues
• Social issues
• Step Two- Review the Literature
– (we will NOT be doing this for the
• Good to know what else has been
studied on the topic.
• Gives one a sense of direction and
makes sure duplication is limited.
Step Three: Form a Hypothesis
1. Teenagers spend most of their free
time using technology at home
2. Girls use internet chatrooms more
than boys do.
When forming a hypothesis,
remember it should be:
1. a statement that predicts the relationship between two
or more variables
2. Stated clearly and simply
4. Limited in scope
Choose a research Design
(In this case we are creating a survey)
Why use the Survey/Interview
1. Allows researchers to collect data on attitudes and
opinions from large numbers of people.
2. Researchers can administer the interviews in person or
over the phone (is cost-effective).
3. Researchers can ask for clarification and note various
context clues (facial expressions, hesitation, side
Types of Questions for Interviews
1. Closed Questions
2. Background Questions
3. Dichotomous Questions
4. Multiple Choice Questions
5. Ranking Questions
6. Intensity or Likert Scale Questions
Areas to Avoid in Your Question Design
– Complex wording or structure - compound sentences,
complex vocabulary words, unusual terminology,
idiomatic expressions - all these things will confuse
some people and make your data less precise.
– Vague or overly general questions - Are any of your
questions so broad that they will not give you specific
information? If you ask yourself what you will learn
from the responses from each question, you will know
whether they are too vague.
– Items that could be misinterpreted - For each survey
item, ask yourself if there are any ways in which it
might be misinterpreted. Many words have different
meanings to different people.
– Questions with a "right" answer - It is an easy and common
mistake to write items that have a socially "correct" or
desirable answer. Also be sure you do not lead your
respondents to answer in a particular way by making them think
you "want" them to provide a certain response. Your items need
to be presented neutrally.
– Double-Barreled Items - These are items that ask about more
than one thing. If you see the word "and" or "or" in your item,
chances are it is double-barreled. Data from items like this are
useless because you have no way of knowing what part of the
question each respondent was thinking of when responding.
Step 5: Collect the Data
Conducting the Interview
– Explain to the subject the purpose of the interview to
ensure the subjects cooperation
– Remember to be active listeners, paying close attention
to the responses and interaction when appropriate. But
DO NOT prompt the interviewee in any way
– Remember to ask each interviewee the same questions in
exactly the same way. The smallest variation can effect
– Record the responses accurately
Step 6: Analyze the Data
• We will cover this in class after the