Data - Its Source and Compilation
A collection of systematically arranged numbers from which conclusions may be drawn is called ‘data’. Data is a numerical statement of aggregates. It is represented by a combination of items organised in rows, and the multiple variables organised in columns.
There is an inter-relationship between many phenomena over the surface of earth. These interactions are influenced by many variables which can be explained in quantitative terms. Data plays an important role in geographical analysis.
The different stages of Statistical Analysis are:
Collection of Data
Organisation of Data
Presentation of Data
Analysis of Data, and
Interpretation of Data
Data in its original form is raw. It includes data that has not been processed for further use. Raw data is highly disorganized, cumbersome to handle and difficult to draw meaningful conclusions. Proper organization and presentation of data is essential for any systematic statistical analysis. After collecting data, the next step is to organize and present them in a classified form.
Sources of data can be classified as primary and secondary. Primary data is original first hand data collected directly from the field. Secondary data is collected through other published or unpublished sources.
Data compilation includes the collection, tabulation and presentation in a tabular form.
The various processes of classification of data are:
Geographical Classification, and
Collected data can be organised using the different distribution methods and can be presented in two forms:
Graphical Presentation, and
Graphical Presentation of Data makes the data more meaningful and understandable. It is used in research work for the visual presentation and analysis of the data.