Participant Observation Advantages and Disadvantages

1506 words 7 pages
All methods involve observation, but participant observation is characterized by the extent to which its advocates insist on observation and interpretation of a situation, informed by an understanding of the situation from the point of view of the participants rather than the observer. An attempt is made to avoid imposing categories from outside. Participant observation is the method of anthropology, although it is used in a wide range of sociological studies when the researcher has 'become part of a daily round, learning languages and meanings, rules of impersonal, relations... and in short, living the life of the people under study.' (Hughes, 1976).
Traditional participant observation is usually undertaken over an
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In this study 6-11 year old children from an isolated society were assessed on their levels of aggression after the introduction of TV. The children knew they were being studied and so they may have shown demand characteristics or social desirability effects.
Quantitative Data
Quantitative data refers to the numerical facts and figures that are collected during a research investigation or field of study. The data and or observations are then analysed and used to interpret a situation or event. Data is measured on a numerical scale such as a histogram, chart etc.
Quantitative evidence provides a good overall picture of a population or geographical region. It can also often be used to measure trends over time. This type of evidence is valuable for describing who, what, where and when.
Quantitative Primary Sources
Primary data is most generally understood as data gathered from the information source and which has not undergone analysis before being included in the needs assessment. Primary data is collected directly from the affected population by the assessment team through field work. Primary data is most often collected through face to face interviews or discussions with members of the affected community, but can also be gathered through phone interviews, radio communication, email exchange, and direct observation.
Quantitative Secondary Sources
Quantitative secondary sources include


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