The Norris Medical Library cannot provide instruction or help with data collection or data analysis, including selecting and using software; ethical/legal issues with data collection; creating surveys; inputting data into software; selecting and running statistical analyses and tests; or determining significance of data. The resources below are provided as an introduction to your self-education in these concepts.
Data Management is a process that encompasses:
Data management should be a part of your project planning from the beginning.
Your research project might include collecting data from individuals or groups. Using software to collect this data ensures uniformity; software also allows for export of data into data analysis software. You may also choose to use paper forms for data collection and later enter the data into software. To choose whether to use an inexpensive software (e.g. SurveyMonkey; Wufoo; Polls for Pages Facebook app, etc.), a USC-provided subscribed software (e.g. Qualtrics, RedCap), or paper forms, consider:
"Writing and administering a survey" is a frequent research method. However, writing a survey is deceptively complex. How do you know that your questions and answers accurately capture people's opinions? How do you know that the answer choices you have provided are readable and actually able to be analyzed?
You may not need to collect data yourself. Using already-collected data can help you move quickly into data analysis. The sites below include freely-available data sets that you can download into data analysis software. In addition to these sites, think about government or non-governmental agencies that may collect data on your specific topic, and use Google to find their websites and look for data.
Use data analysis software to analyze your data.
All PC computers at the Norris Medical Library have Microsoft Excel, SAS 9.4, SPSS 24, and STATA 14 installed. The library does not offer training or support on using these programs. Use the links and books below to learn about more ways to access these programs and learn to use them.
The Norris Library also owns hundreds of books on data analysis. Search the library catalog for the words "data analysis," the name of the data analysis program you are using, or the name of the type of test you want to learn about, to find books on these topics.