KEY FEATURES: Introduces students to developing research questions and shows their importance in driving research design. Rarely taught topics, such as how to enter and clean data, offer students information missed in both research methods and statistics courses. Shows how to write up survey results for academic, business and nonprofit reports to alleviate the confusion students feel about how to write up findings. Rigorous treatment of sampling focuses on many sampling issues from probability theory to weighting. Offers the process of actually conducting a survey with advice on administering surveys, incentives, and improving response rates.

What Is Data Cleaning?

Erin Ruel

Data cleaning is the process of checking all variables in the dataset diagnostically as well as cosmetically to ensure all variables are ready for analysis. Start by noting which variables are string variables (text responses) versus numeric variables. Check to see if the string variables ought to be string variables, meaning are they open-ended questions or “other specify” response variables? If yes, set them aside. If no, convert the string variable to be numeric. This is easily accomplished in SAS or STATA by adding 0 (Q12n = Q12 + 0), and in SPSS by using the “recode into new variable” option from the drop-down menu. In Excel, format the column.

With the numeric variables, we start and end with a ...

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