What is Primary Research? Tutorial for Students Working on a Research Paper or Project

hi guys I’m Gabby Wallace this is go natural English and in this video I’m talking about kinds of research specifically what is primary research there’s primary and there’s secondary research so in this video we’re going to look at what is primary research examples things to think about questions to ask yourself let’s get started so first of all what is primary research when you think primary think direct primary research is research that the author of a research paper carries out themselves so if I am writing a research paper I can do primary research on my topic so for example let’s say I’m writing a research paper on the best kind of coffee so what is the best coffee in the neighborhood where I work so I might decide to produce a survey so I’ve created a survey asking people about what is their favorite kind of cop and I might decide that my subject test pool is going to be a hundred people so I would find out how to reach 100 people maybe by email or maybe face-to-face if I just stop people in the streets and give them a survey that’s one kinds of primary research I’m directly conducting that research and I will take the results I’ll add and want to find my results so this is quantitative research and I can use that information in my research paper another kind of primary research a method that you could use is an interview you can interview one person so it would be a one-on-one interview or you could conduct a small group interview you can conduct one-on-one interviews with many people asking the same question and that way it’s more like a survey but an interview is where you go more in depth and you can ask more detailed questions and you’re looking for quotes instead of answers yes or no more a rating so an interview would be more on the qualitative side of research so because I’m directly involved in the interview and I’m directly gathering that research is primary research so we have surveys interviews another kind of interview would be a focus group often used for marketing research when you gather a small group of people together maybe five people six people and you have them discuss a topic I might have them discuss their favorite kind of coffee and that would give me some information depending on the questions I asked them to discuss that would give me some information for my paper another kind of primary research is observation again let’s use the example of writing a paper about the best kind of coffee I propose in a few different cafes in the area and observe their customers so I might take notes on specific categories that I’ve predetermined like how many people come in to buy coffee at a certain time of the day what type of people go to that cafe and what kind of coffee do they have and so on so you create the categories or the questions the information that you’re looking for and then you go in observe it last another kind of primary research is where you use pre-existing documents such as letters journals could be a census report it could be a lot of different kinds of information but you use that raw information so it can also be a photograph it could be a song so an audio file or video any kind of raw material and you produce new weighting from face of that material another example that I liked was you could watch let’s say record and watch three commercials on major TV channels and look at those commercials observe them for gender roles so maybe you’re researching gender roles in media and you use those commercials to inform your research that is primary research because although the commercials already exist you are analyzing that we are observing them and analyzing them to make your own conclusions and your own research so that’s the new information okay so you can do your own primary research as an author you should also be able to recognize when a source of information that you’re reading may be an article is primary research done by the author that you’re reading but if the author explains how he did the experiment the methods he use and shows us findings there should be some rapport with numbers or explanations sharing exactly how he did the experiment can see that that was primary research done in that article that you’re reading but that’s not your primary research we’re reading someone else’s primary research but should be able to recognize that it is primary research if you want to create your own primary research you should ask yourself some questions like what is it that you want to discover what is your research question how are you going to find that information what questions will lead you to that information who do you need to speak with and how are you going to gain access to that kind of person also considered do you have any bias related to the topic that you’re researching we all have biases it’s natural because we all have different experiences we’re all from certain groups or culture and age range etc so consider it how can you make sure that your research will not be biased can you ask a group of peers to review it can you discuss your survey questions or your interview questions before you conduct your research so if you can have another set of eyes or another set of ears listen to your ideas before you go out and spend time doing your research that could help you from making the mistake of asking a biased question okay an example of a biased question it might be worded in a way that gets your participant to to answer in a certain way it might persuade them for example if I’m asking a question about a cafe or their favorite kind of coffee if I said oh I love bold coffee don’t you that kind of question is kind of persuading that person to agree with you so I wouldn’t want to express my opinion and I wouldn’t want to ask the question in a way that makes the person feel like they should so I might ask a more neutral question like what kind of coffee do you prefer bold or mild group what kind of coffee do you prefer a bold or a lighter brewed coffee if you’re creating a survey or an interview make sure your questions are short and to the points if it’s a survey it’s best to keep it under two pages because this is something that people are probably volunteering to do a lot of people are busy they don’t like to stop and take time out of their day just to do a survey so hopefully you can also specifically target a certain group of people and they might actually be interested in your survey if it’s specific enough so if I’m doing research on coffee they dedicated target people who are really interested in coffee and they might actually enjoy taking my survey it’s to endless explanation about primary research I’d like to quickly go over some of the positives and negatives of doing your own primary research the good things are as a researcher you can create new information that can inform your research topic you can make sure that you get information you need as you’re creating new information so you have total control over your survey your interview your observation and you pick out the information that you need for your behavior so that is an excellent it very helpful now on the negative side it can take more effort or time or work because you have to design your survey design your interview or structure your observation you have to figure out where you’re going to observe how to gain access to that area or the group of people we want to observe interview or survey so it takes a little time to set up it can also cost money like if you need to print paper surveys and even when you do survey people they may not always want to respond so all in all it can take a little bit more time planning and efforts but there are advantages which I’ve said like you have a lot of control and you can get new and specific information we’ll help you out with your paper and can also give you a name as a researcher if you’re finding out the information and you can help others along the way so I hope that this helped you don’t understand what primary research is how you might go about doing some primary research of your own and some of the pros and cons of the primary research good luck with your research papers and I’ll talk to you soon

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