Data Collection

Collection of both quantitative and qualitative data can occur in numerous ways, varying by discipline, methodology and research design. The method of data gathering – whether from instruments, sensors, or computer system logs; by survey, interview, observation, ethnography or audio/visual recording; or otherwise – affects the research questions asked, data analysis strategies, storage and computation considerations, and more. It is a central component of data management planning.

While expertise about methodology and research design general resides within the disciplines, questions about resources such as core imaging facilities or available survey software fall squarely within the scope of Research Data Management.


General Tips

Before collecting data, PLAN!

  • Can you use existing data?
  • Who should collect?
  • When should datra collection start?
  • Data collectiom cam cost a lot -choose your samples carefully

Quality Control

  • Data reflects the population under study
  • Allows for decisions to be made
  • Control for erros and bias
  • What is reliable and valid in one setting may not be so in others
  • Use best practices for questionnaires
  • Test your questionnaire
  • Train interviewers



  • Qualtrics
  • Redcap
  • SurveyMonkey
  • GID tools
  • Epicollect
  • Epi Info
  • Open Data Kit
  • Text Mining
  • Lab data (what tools are used...?)
  • Video/Audio/Image
  • Others

Research data lifecycle: