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For instance, members of the research team should be paid salaries. You may need to pay for office space and equipment, and compensate your participants for taking part. These costs do not exist when doing secondary research.Although researchers may need to purchase secondary data sets, this is always less costly than if the research were to be conducted from scratch.If you are reading this guide, it's very likely you may be doing secondary research for your dissertation, rather than primary.
New technologies make this process much less time-consuming.
In most cases, you can find your secondary data through online search engines or by contacting previous researchers via email.
TABLE 1 outlines the differences between primary and secondary research: Whatever type of research you are conducting, always be aware of its strengths and limitations.
If you look at the table above, you should already be able to discern some advantages of secondary research.
As you probably already know, primary research is when the researcher collects the data himself or herself.
The researcher uses so-called “real-time” data, which means that the data is collected during the course of a specific research project and is under the researcher’s direct control.A third important advantage of secondary research is that you can base your project on a large scope of data.If you wanted to obtain a large data set yourself, you would need to dedicate an immense amount of effort.Like recruiting your participants, choosing and preparing your measures, and spending days (or months) collecting your data.That said, you do still need to know how to do secondary research. So, go make a decent-sized mug of your favourite hot beverage (consider a glass of water, too) then come back and get comfy.For instance, data that you will use for your secondary research project has been collected by researchers who are likely to have had years of experience in recruiting representative participant samples, designing studies, and using specific measurement tools.If you had collected this data yourself, your own data set would probably have more flaws, simply because of your lower level of expertise when compared to these professional researchers.With secondary research, you are relying not only on a large scope of data, but also on professionally collected data.This is yet another advantage of secondary research.As an undergraduate or graduate student, your dissertation project won't need to be an expensive endeavour.Thus, it is useful to know that you can further reduce costs, by using freely available secondary data sets. Most students value another important advantage of secondary research, which is that secondary research saves you time.