1. Be able to identify and select sources of data and information
1.1 Discuss the nature of data and information
Before actually looking at the nature of data and information it is important to note that information is a subset of data in that it has a use for the user; as the name implies it informs the user about some subject, but for another person without a use or understanding it is simply data. It is easy to lose the information in the enormous quantity of data available today from many sources especially the internet and additionally to take data presented electronically as being fact whereas in reality it bears little similarity to the truth.
In earlier days going to the library ...view middle of the document...
In this way it would be possible for example to say that the best 3 colours for a car are
Well that is what the AA say according to their website*
How trustworthy is that information? We can see later!
1.2 Evaluate relevant sources of data and information
Having said that data falls into two core types we can split this again to reflect the collection method. This is an important attribute as this reflects the confidence in the data and the confidence that the data fits the requirement.
The two data collection methods are referred to as:
Primary data: - This is collected by you or by an agent on your behalf for a specific purpose and the data collection structure and method has been designed and / or agreed by you.
Secondary data: - This has been collected by someone else for their specific purposes but they make it available to you and it is up to you to interpret this to suit your needs. It needs to be handled with care as the data might be invalid. For example a car tyre manufacturer who wants to know the likely take up of winter tyres in Norway who uses a data collection for winter tyre take-up done the previous year. Only on inspection do they notice the location of the data was California which does not fit the weather conditions to be found in Norway nor the legal requirements.
Secondary data is by far the most common type of data because it is generic and is not restricted to a specific requirement. The only problem with secondary data is getting the right fit as seen in the example above. Sources of Secondary data typically include:
* Survey Information
* Reference Books
* Databases of information
And most importantly
* secondary data from within your own organisation. This is particularly relevant because the target organisation is the same and the quality of the data is guaranteed due to it being created by colleagues – the only real worries are the age of the data and how accurately the data fits the need.
Primary data additionally comes in two forms; formal and informal. Informal ...