Last Updated on February 21, 2024 by Nasir Hanif
Secondary data is the information, facts, and figures one collects from the existing research. Whether you are doing your research for a dissertation or a research paper, you can use secondary data to validate your research. Further, when you use secondary data, you don’t need to go for interviews, questionnaires, and surveys on your own, but you can simply use other’s research to address the topic of your assigning.
You must be thinking right now that isn’t it stealing to use data from the existing research. The answer is NO. Because, in secondary data collection, you don’t copy others’ work but only use the facts and figures of the research in your study while crediting the research’s real author through referencing. But obviously, if you would not cite and refer to the original research, the data will be considered plagiarized.
This post will explore some of the benefits of using secondary data for your research. Also, some important points regarding secondary data collection will be shared and discussed.
Table of Contents
Key Benefits of Using Secondary Data
There are several benefits of using secondary data some of which are as follows.
Þ It Saves Time
Research that is involved in dissertation or research paper writing consumes a lot of time. You need to spend long hours and even months collecting statistical data through quantitative research and opinion-based data through qualitative research. You have to reserve time from your tough schedule to take interviews and evaluate surveys. By using the secondary data you can save all this time for the fulfillment of your other academic and social responsibilities.
Þ It Reduces Research Cost
Research paper or dissertation writing requires great research that involves qualitative and quantitative research. Both these research methods are costly. Students have to reserve a big amount for their research work, especially at a PhD level. Mostly they are provided with the research funds by the government but many times they have to bear this financial burden on their own pockets.
Therefore, the students who can’t afford the expenses for the accomplishment of their dissertations due to the financial limitations, take help from the cheap dissertations website UK based so that they can get done with their research at the least cost. However, the financial issues concerning academic research can be resolved by the use of secondary data. The existing research available on the internet helps you save your money by providing you with the required data without burdening you’re your pockets.
Þ It Simplifies your Research
Qualitative and quantitative research-based academic or professional projects suck all the energy of the brain cells. Huge efforts are required to set questions for the close-ended questionnaires, to prepare and generate surveys and perform experiments to take observations (masteressaywriters, 2021). You can reduce this effort by using secondary data collection. In this way, you will just need to sit in front of your laptop and search for authentic websites to collect secondary data. Also, secondary data make it easier to find out the research gap.
Þ It Gives Better Understanding of the Topic
When you visit different sites to collect secondary data, you get to understand your research topic more intensely. The reason is that different researchers address the same topic in the light of their own style, ideas, and distinctive perspectives. Also, you encounter different arguments which provoke your own thought process and strengthen your grip on the concerned topic.
Þ It Adds to the Worth of Your Research
As it is said above when you use secondary data, you must give references to the used sources. These references and citations make your study verifiable that ultimately increases its worth. The secondary data you collect from the indexed journals are trustworthy and recognized which shows the quality of your research and adds significance to your study.
Things to Consider While Collecting Secondary Data
Following are the major points that you must keep in mind while collecting and using secondary data for your research.
Authenticity means the secondary data you collect during your research must belong to an existing research paper or scholarly article written by a well-known author or another reliable source. Anonymous research is not authentic.
For example, when you ask professionals to write my exam for me UK based, you surely check their credibility before hiring them, right? You make sure whether they are recognized as the experts of the domain and possess considerable experience. The reason is that you don’t want to compromise your grades. Similarly, you should not compromise on the quality of secondary data you add to your research papers or dissertations. Therefore, the authenticity of the secondary data counts the most.
You must check the authority of the source from where you collect secondary data. Authority means the research source has the authority to address the concerned topic. For example, if you are using a report produced by a journalist on a population-related topic, it would not be considered authoritative; rather, you should collect data from the government census website. Such authoritative sources sometimes hold sensitive data which requires special permissions to be explored (Renbarger, Sulak, and Kaul, 2019).
Irrelevant data in the research content, confuse the reader and distract his focus from the main idea of the research. The use of secondary data is beneficial until it is closely relevant to the research topic; otherwise, it is of no use; rather, impacts the effectiveness of your study.
The accuracy of the data collected is another most essential element of secondary research. It depends on the implication of the above two rules, i.e. authenticity and authority. The more your secondary data is authentic and authoritative, the more it will be accurate. Another factor that contributes to the accuracy of the secondary data is its modernity. The more recent the information is, the more it’ll be accurate. Because, the facts change over time, so, if you use older reports to collect statistics, the data may be inaccurate for now.
This is the most comprehensive guide about what is secondary data, its benefits, and its qualities. Both the students and professional researchers can take help from the above-mentioned guidelines to make their studies worthwhile.
MEW. 2021. How to write a dissertation methodology. Online Available at <https://masteressaywriters.co.uk/blogs/how-to-write-a-dissertation-methodology> [Accessed on 9th March 2022]
Renbarger, R.L., Sulak, T.N. and Kaul, C.R., 2019. Finding, accessing, and using secondary data for research on gifted education and advanced academics. Journal of Advanced Academics, 30(4), pp.463-473.