# Approaches to Survey Data

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Approaches to the
Analysis of Survey Data
March 2001

Statistical Services Centre
Support Service to DFID

Contents
1. Preparing for the Analysis

5

1.1

Introduction

5

1.2

Data Types

6

1.3

Data Structure

7

1.4

Stages of Analysis

9

1.5

Population Description as the Major Objective

11

1.6

Comparison as the Major Objective

12

1.7

When Weighting Matters

13

1.8

Coding

14

1.9

Ranking & Scoring

15

2. Doing the Analysis

17

2.1

Approaches

17

2.2

One-Way Tables

18

2.3

Cross-Tabulation: Two-Way & Higher-Way Tables

18

2.4

Tabulation & the Assessment of Accuracy

19

2.5

Multiple Response Data

20

2.6

Profiles

21

2.7

Looking for Respondent Groups

22

2.8

Indicators

23

2.9

Validity

25

2.10

Summary

26

2.11

Next Steps

26

© SSC 2001 – Approaches to the Analysis of Survey Data

3

4

© SSC 2001 – Approaches to the Analysis of Survey Data

1. Preparing for the Analysis
1.1 Introduction
This guide is concerned with some fundamental ideas of analysis of data from surveys. The discussion is at a statistically simple level; other more sophisticated statistical approaches are outlined in our guide Modern Methods of Analysis. Our aim here is to clarify the ideas that successful data analysts usually need to consider to complete a survey analysis task purposefully.
An ill-thought-out analysis process can produce incompatible outputs and many results that never get discussed or used. It can overlook key findings and fail to pull out the subsets of the sample where clear findings are evident. Our brief discussion is intended to assist the research team in working...

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