Data, a broad term, are unprocessed collections of raw observations, evidence, information, or empirical materials that can be interpreted in numeric and nonnumerical forms. Data create the bridge between the content and method providing firsthand evidence or observation.

This entry focuses on data and examines how to navigate this broad and abstract term. To begin, this entry defines data and considers why it is important to determine hypotheses and research questions before determining how to gather data to answer research inquiries. Next, this entry describes sources of data through quantitative and qualitative forms. Finally, this entry provides a discussion of primary and secondary data.


Data can be anything. Data are all around us. Yet, it is important when doing research to ...

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