Society for Social Work and Research

Sixteenth Annual Conference Research That Makes A Difference: Advancing Practice and Shaping Public Policy
11-15 January 2012 I Grand Hyatt Washington I Washington, DC

RMW-4 Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Secondary Data!

Thursday, January 12, 2012: 8:00 AM-12:00 PM
Independence E (Grand Hyatt Washington)
JoAnne McFarland O'Rourke, MSW, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and Lynette Hoelter, PhD, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
This session will cover several aspects of secondary data, including uses for research and instruction, as well as the importance of data sharing and methods of protecting respondent confidentiality in files that are shared. Participants will be able ask questions and follow examples online.
This workshop will cover three aspects of archived, or secondary, data that are important to social work researchers: (1) finding and using secondary data for your research purposes, (2) teaching with secondary data, and (3) sharing the data you collect. In the first segment of the workshop, sources for secondary data, as well as data for online analysis, will be covered. In the second segment, resources readily available for teaching and learning with data in undergraduate and early graduate education will be discussed. The final segment will include the benefits of data sharing, ways researchers can share data, and how they can protect respondent confidentiality in files they share. Data and resources available from the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), based at the Institute for Social Research (ISR), University of Michigan will be the primary focus of the presentation, though other resources will also be discussed, such as those from federal agencies. Examples of what participants will learn include the following: ways to search for data, including at the variable-level; how to run cross-tabulations online; where to find modules and other resources for teaching with data in the classroom; how to use existing questionnaires for instructional purposes; researcher characteristics that influence data sharing; methods of data protection used when files are shared publicly; ways researchers can protect data they share with colleagues, students, and on servers. If participants would like to follow along with online examples, they will need to bring a laptop equipped with Internet access (not required). Examples will be provided in handouts.

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