Copyright

Using Existing Statistics to Collect Social Research Data

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: How Observational & Field Research Are Used to Collect Data

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
 Replay
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:07 Existing Statistics
  • 0:37 Prior Research
  • 2:24 Program Evaluation
  • 3:30 Caution
  • 3:51 Lesson Summary
Add to Add to Add to

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Login or Sign up

Timeline
Autoplay
Autoplay
Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Devin Kowalczyk

Devin has taught psychology and has a master's degree in clinical forensic psychology. He is working on his PhD.

This lesson explains the primary places a researcher can collect social data from others instead of collecting it themselves. The lesson also reminds researchers of a major pitfall in using other's data.

Existing Statistics

Sometimes the smartest way to conduct research is by looking at what is lying around. There are many people and institutions that have information that needs to be examined. Existing statistics are previously collected data that has been analyzed in at least one way. There are two primary ways a researcher can collect existing research: prior research and social programs. We will look at both of these and how a researcher can extract social data from them.

Prior Research

There are a lot of researchers out there collecting data. After they complete their statistical tests, the data doesn't disappear. In fact, ethical standards require you to keep the data for at least several years. So, a researcher could have a drawer in a cabinet simply dedicated to raw data they've collected. To make the discussion easier, we will call the researcher that did the original work and collected the data the original researcher and the researcher who wants to reanalyze the data the reanalyzing researcher.

The original researcher had an idea and collected opinions, surveys and information from participants. They then performed statistical tests to confirm or disprove a theory, likely by entering it into a computer program (because the statistics are often immensely complex if done by hand).

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create An Account
Support