Posted: August 24th, 2015

Quantitative Research Report( Research Design and Methods)

This assignment is based on your evaluation and analysis of an existing survey of Lincoln Christmas Market undertaken by the University of Lincoln in 2013.  You will consider the design of the questionnaire itself and you will be asked to undertake some analysis (in SPSS) of the dataset that was created using this questionnaire.

The datafilewill be provided to you during the SPSS workshops session.  This will also be uploaded to Blackboard for you to access, together with a copy of the original questionnaire, and an extract of a research paper that sets out the context, research question, and methodology for the survey, together with background literature.

You should take some time to read and familiarise yourself with these files.

Your task is to create a report on this research that answers the questions set out below. Your report should include appropriate tables and graphs and a set of references. You should use SPSS for data analysis where required.

1. Evaluate Questionnaire Design

Considering all the documents carefully and examining the data file that was produced by using this questionnaire you should write a brief summary of the methods used in this research; including your understanding of the research aims of this survey exercise.

Consider the questionnaire used for the data collection and make observations and suggestions for improvement about the design of the questionnaire itself. (We suggest you complete it yourself or ask friends to complete it in order to trial it).

From the accompanying draft research paper find out what sampling approach the authors say was used.  Comment generally on the approach used to collect the data.
2. Analysis of survey data (total = 60% of the marks)

This section of your report should be based on an analysis of the dataset provided and should include clear and effective tables and/or graphs to answer the following:

2a. Provide an analysis of sample composition.

Questions 13 – 16 ask about the demographic characteristics of the respondents. By running frequencies and/or descriptive statistics on these questions, develop a sample composition table for the survey.  Explain why it is important to know the composition of any sample. Discuss any aspects of this sample composition you find unexpected and reflect on how these findings might relate to the sampling approach used (10%).

2b. Analysis of satisfaction levels reported in the Questionnaire

In the questionnaire, question 4 asks about respondents’ satisfaction with a number of aspects of Lincoln Christmas Market.  Using descriptive statistics, describe the responses obtained to each of these questions.  Rank the responses to in your report so that it is clear which aspects ‘scored’ the highest and which the lowest. Identify any aspects that respondents are particularly satisfied with and those they are less satisfied with.  (10%)
The City of Lincoln Council are interested to find out whether levels of satisfaction with the Market vary depending on whether visitors are resident in Lincoln or live elsewhere (covered in Question 1 of the survey).  Use cross-tabulations (crosstabs) to look at the all responses given to Question 4 in relation to this independent variable. Identify which of these appear to show noticeable differences. Using chi-squared tests identify if any of these differences identified are statistically significant.  Reflect on what this analysis may be able to tell the organisers of the Christmas Market. Explain in your own words what these tests of difference show (15%)

2c. Analysing expenditure

In Question 9 of the survey, respondents are asked toestimate how much they have spent on different activities, such as food and drink and accommodation, as well as their expenditure overall. Using descriptive statistics, undertake an analysis of the total expenditure across the sample for each area of activity, as well as the mean expenditure per respondent.  Comment on these findings and consider the activities where respondents have spent the most, and the least. (15%).

The organisers of the Christmas Market are particularly interested in whether expenditure is different among visitors to, and residents of, Lincoln.  Using Compare Means, provide an analysis of the overall expenditure at the Market (the final sub-question of question 9) by whether respondents are residents or visitors. Comment on these findings. (10%).

3. Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations.

The final section of the report should now summarise your findings and draw some conclusions. Reiterate the key findings from your above analysis – highlighting the points you think the organisers of Lincoln Christmas Market should pay particular attention to. Your report should highlight what the research suggests are the areas where the Christmas Market performs well, as well as those areas where improvements are needed (10%).

Highlight any recommendations you may have for further developing the research – including any suggestions you would make for changing, modifying or extending  the research design for future surveys of the Christmas Market. Reflect also on what have you learnt as a result of this evaluation that you can take to your future research studies. (10%)

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