The Survey Method

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Introduction and Definition
For the classification of the research designs, the approach needed to collect the primary data, is very commonly used. For solving this particular purpose, there are two options we can observe the events, people, behavior, conditions etc.

Also we can use the other alternative option which involves communicating with the people about the various topics. Now in this article, we will study about the survey method which is used a lot as a social survey and finds maximum use where the published data is available.

So this method is the technique used for carrying out the investigation processes with the help of direct observation or by the collection of the data by conducting interviews etc. The survey method is a very essential and a useful tool to gather the evidence relating to the various social problems.

According to Shelly M. Harrison, social survey is a, “comparative undertaking which applies scientific method to the study and the treatment of the currently related social problems and the conditions having definite geographic limit and bearing, plus such a spreading of facts, conclusions and recommendations as will make them, as far as possible, the common knowledge of the community and a force for the intelligent coordinated action.”

Objectives of the Survey
1. Collecting general information.
2. To provide data that later helps in the formulation of the hypothesis.
3. To enable the researcher to have direct and close contact with the process or the phenomenon, that is being studied.
4. To know the people better by knowing their opinions and their attitudes.
5. To explain the relationship between the various variables.
6. To refine and expand the old theories in order to get the new theories.

Characteristics of the Social Survey
1. Are less intensive in nature and also involve widely dispersed group of people.
2. Data collected in a social survey can act as a proper base for carrying out further the various social research operations.
3. Helps in making the assertion about the distribution of the characteristics in a population.
4. Helps in carrying out the study of specific current problems of the society only.
5. Uses methods like observation, interview etc for collecting the data.

Advantages of Survey
1. Researcher is able to directly get involved with the people from whom he wants to get the information.
2. The results obtained from this method are not based on any type of theory but instead are based on the actual facts of the life.
3. Very helpful in the testing of the validity of the theories.
4. Offers greater objectivity.
5. Very less possibilities of existence of the personal bias.
6. Help in the formulation of the hypothesis.

Disadvantages of survey.
1. Very expensive.
2. Very time consuming.
3. Wasteful method.
4. Less reliable.
5. Sometimes personal bias may vitiate the results.
6. Deals with the problems relating to the immediate importance only.
7. Occurrence of the non response errors.
8. Not an efficient method for conducting the verification of the accuracy of the data, which is collected.

This article has been written by KJ Singh a MBA Graduate from a prestigious Business School In India
Article Published:August 19, 2010
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  • lonya morris September 8, 2014 at 4:03 am

    I understand the meaning of survey, its x-tics, advantages and disadvantages.

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