Questions on Secondary Data

Look at page 124 of Sociology AS and answer these questions:

  • Why is secondary data vital in order to give a sociologist a historical perspective?
  • Public bodies keeping records have to meet targets. How might this affect validity (true to the reality) and reliability (the ability to compare data over time and place)?
  • What is contained in the publication Social Trends?
  • What is the benefit of having the same questions repeated in every census?

Look at Page 125 and answer these questions:

  • When is work done by a sociologist considered to be secondary data?
  • Which theoretical approach is used by sociologists looking at diaries?
  • Who is likely to do extended writing and what issue does this raise about representativenes?
  • When is a diary primary data for sociological research and when is it secondary data?
  • When an autobiography is published, what category of document can it come under?
  • Why does a sociologist have to be careful about reports on the mass media to be used as secondary data?
  • How can secondary research be used to convert qualitative to quantitative type data?
  • In what ways should sociologists assess and evaluate secondary data?
Explain this sentence from the textbook: The point is not whether the statistics are right or wrong, but that they result from people making sense of, and interpreting, events.

Look at Page 124 again and answer the questions 1 and 2 in Think It Through.

McNeill, P., Blundell, J., Griffiths, J. (2003), Sociology AS: The Complete Companion, Cheltenham: Nelson Thornes.