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Summary Evaluation
Using Archive Data Sources for Teaching and Learning Research
4th June 2003, University of Essex



Event Description
This was a one-day workshop organised jointly by the RCBN and the Economic and Social Data Service (ESDS) based at the University of Essex (formerly the UK Data Archive and the Institute for Social and Economic Research). The workshop provided both conceptual and practical advice on the use of archived 'qualitative 'and 'quantitative' data. The day also focused on using archived data sources for teaching and learning research, although the 'hands-on' sessions allowed participants to consider their use in whatever their chosen field.

The workshop was organised in two parts. The first part of the workshop considered the creation and depositing of data - a requirement of all ESRC-funded research (and of all Teaching and Learning Research Programme projects). The second part of the workshop then provided participants with the opportunity to see how archived data can be used in current and future research.

The workshop was designed around the following areas:

  • Overview of Economic and Social Data Service
  • Creating and depositing high quality data
  • Group sessions (creating/preparing qualitative and survey data for archiving – flexible discussion on consent, confidentiality, metadata and documentation etc
  • Hands-on session 1 (locating relevant data sources, using online systems to explore quantitative data and downloading, analysing and citing data)
  • Hands-on session 2 (using online systems to explore qualitative data)
    Discussion and close

Evaluation Summary
The feedback generated by this workshop indicated that the majority of participants were extremely satisfied with the workshop in terms of achieving its initial aims and objectives. Many found the content and practical aspects of the workshop interesting and worthwhile and were able to glean plenty on information regarding the preparation, depositing and accessing of data from the Archive.

Various individuals disclosed that they would have liked for each participant to be introduced to each other at the commencement of the workshop in order to get to know each other and each others’ research. Comments were also made relating to the frequency and quantity of PowerPoint slides and certain individuals felt that there was rather an excessive amount.

Certain participants were dissatisfied with the general organisation of the workshop in terms of handout material and the layout of the workshop in relation to the campus. One participant advised that each segment of the workshop was too spaced out across the campus and another individual felt that the handout material contained basic factual errors.

The majority of comments made however were very positive. The participants were able to experience various aspects of the Archive through practical tasks and subsequently develop sound background knowledge for future use and in order to disseminate the information to others at a later date (cascading knowledge to their respective organisations).

For a more detailed evaluation of this workshop please contact the RCBN.

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This page was last updated 18th February 2004