# Qualitative Data and Quantitative Data: Are they different?

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Qualitative Data and Quantitative Data: Are they different?

Yes, they are different but… also same-same!

Quantitative: - numbers - frequencies - sizes Qualitative: -Meanings -Experiences -Description of people's knowledge, attitudes or behaviors. Focus of data collection

Objectives of data collection Quantitative: -To derive statistically reliable information -To statistically measure differences between treatments Ex: 40% of rural women can read and write Qualitative: -To get in-depth and rich description -To explain causes and effects -To clarify concepts Ex: Rural women feel confident being able to write

Questions answered Quantitative: -How many? -How much? Ex: How many participants did not join the trip to Central Plaza? Qualitative: -How come? -Why? -Who? -What? -When? Ex: Why did some participants not join the trip to Central Plaza?

Profile of participants to the ADB-MI Learning Program on Project M&E in the GMS

Data collection method Quantitative: -Experiments -Questionnaires -Surveys -Sampling -Census Qualitative: -Focused group discussions -Case studies -Interactive interviews -Participatory methods (ex. Participatory Rural Appraisal or PRA; Participatory M&E)

Data collection method Quantitative: -Prefers random sampling from a population Ex. 10% of villages in Khon Kaen will be sampled Qualitative: -Prefers specific segments of the population Ex. Poorest women in 5 poorest villages in Khon Kaen

Data analysis method Quantitative: -Statistical analysis -Standard deviation, average, variance, percentage Ex: Only 5% of the farmers attended the training. Qualitative: -In-depth descriptive analysis Ex: Because it was planting season, not many farmers can attend the meeting.

Data collection method Quantitative: -Uses closed questions Ex: Are you happy? Qualitative: -Uses open-ended questions Ex: Why are you happy?

■ How do you assess the training methods used? ■ Which training methods did you like best and why? 1 (not good) 2 (somewhat good) 3 (good) 4 (very good) 5 (excellent) Ex. Assessment of training methodology:

Results produced Quantitative: -More objective -Easy to sum up, evaluate, simplify Qualitative: -More subjective -Helps understand the processes behind experimental results -Improves quality of surveys

Method to check validity and reliability of data Quantitative: -Conduct repeated trials -Increase sample size Qualitative: -Uses triangulation (Cross checking data using at least 3 different methods and from 3 different sources )

When to use Quantitative: -Depends on objectives Qualitative: -Depends on objectives

Some Reminders There is no one best way of doing things! It is best to combine both qualitative and quantitative methods Don’t just rely on numbers, seek explanations. Don’t just rely on explanations, seek some numbers.

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