Qualitative data is descriptive and approximate data. Qualitative data has no specific measurements, units, characteristics or properties. There are three main kinds of qualitative data which are interview, observations and documents.
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Evidence based practice used in clinical practices and medical sectors; the principle behind it is practical decisions should be made based research studies. The qualitative data that can be collected include interviewing both patients and doctors and recording the data audio or video recordings. Observations can be made by visiting any hospital for several days and recording the data on paper, or taking photos. Existing documents are used to collect data, such as magazines that have already conducted research and analyzed the qualitative data using content analysis.
Observation as an approach to law enforcement is not reliable. A good example is the drug trafficking. The right quantity of the drug cannot be measured accurately through observation. Survey as another approach to law enforcement involves the law enforcers interrogating people if they had been victims of the crime and collecting information. An interview involves conversing between the law enforcers and the crime’s victim. The police will ask the victim questions regarding the crime to get elicit facts and statements from them. The main advantage of this method is that the police (enforcers) can probe deeper into the response given by the victim.
Interviews can be especially useful in collecting qualitative data about substance abuse. Interviews act as the only way possible for gathering sensitive data of substance abusers. Observing the way the abusers live, how and where they get their drugs is another way to obtain the qualitative data. With the above methods, data collected can describe and give some sort of account about drug abusers.
Questionnaires are another way of collecting qualitative data, but they may not be accurate. A questionnaire may contain a biased or leading question, for example, “Police work is hard. Are there times police work becomes tedious?” Data can be visualized on pie charts, bar charts and line charts. For instance, the number of female doctors in a hospital, the number of drug abusers in a state and drugs mostly abused.
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