Statistics in Data Collection and Analysis

6470 Words Jul 1st, 2013 26 Pages
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Table of Contents Chapter 37. Some Operations in Evaluating Community Intervent... > Section 5. Collecting and Analyzing Data

Collecting and Analyzing Data | | Contributed by Phil Rabinowitz and Stephen FawcettEdited by Christina Holt |
What do we mean by collecting data?
What do we mean by analyzing
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This could be a program, method, system, or other action. A dependent variableis what may change as a result of the independent variable or intervention. A dependent variable could be a behavior, outcome, or other condition. A smoking cessation program, for example, is an independent variable that may change group members’ smoking behavior, the primary dependent variable. What do we mean by analyzing data?
Analyzing information involves examining it in ways that reveal the relationships, patterns, trends, etc. that can be found within it. That may mean subjecting it to statistical operations that can tell you not only what kinds of relationships seem to exist among variables, but also to what level you can trust the answers you’re getting. It may mean comparing your information to that from other groups (a control or comparison group, statewide figures, etc.), to help draw some conclusions from the data. The point, in terms of your evaluation, is to get an accurate assessment in order to better understand your work and its effects on those you’re concerned with, or in order to better understand the overall situation.
There are two kinds of data you’re apt to be working with, although not all evaluations will necessarily include both. Quantitative data refer to the information that is collected as, or can be translated into, numbers, which can then be displayed and analyzed mathematically. Qualitative
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