Data can take a variety of forms. Some are readily amenable to statistical analysis and some arebetter suited to other methods of analysis. When you
re trying to solve some problem or researchquestion, though, you need to use whatever is available that fits. Here are twelve types of data tothink about using in your next analysis.
Data Type Description Generation Examples
AutomaticMeasurementsInformation generated bydevices, usually electronic ormechanical, that operatewithout human involvement(other than calibration andsample introduction).Experimenter-DeviceThermocouples,strain-gagescales, electronicmetersManualMeasurementsInformation generated bydevices that require humaninvolvement to carry out themeasurement.Experimenter-DeviceRulers, calipers,thermometers,balance-beamscalesArchivedRecordsInformation generated by anidentifiable person ororganizationKnownindividual ororganizationGovernmentrecords, financialdata, personaldiaries, logs,notesDirectedResponsesInformation receives as theresult of a specific directinquiry.Experimenter-SubjectSurveys, focusgroups,interrogationsElectronicRecordingsInformation stored onaudiovisual devicesExperimenter-DeviceVideos, audiorecordings,photos, false-color imagesMetadataData about data
their origins,qualities, scales, and so on.DataGeneratorTime, location,and method ofdata generationTransformationsInformation created from otherinformation.Data AnalystPercentages,sums, z-scores,ratios, and so on.Analog DataInformation from a source thatresembles in some respect aphenomenon underinvestigationExperimenterExperimental labanimals, models