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Test Your Data Collection Tool

You’ve essentially done "all you can do" and your plan is as good as it’s going to get, right? Nope.

Get Out and Test!OK, you’ve gotten as much feedback as you can from colleagues, experts, and outsiders, and you’ve implemented all their great advice. You’ve essentially done "all you can do," right? Nope. Now it’s time to test out your data collection tool. This is the final step before you begin collecting data, and it is especially important if you have not consulted people from your target population yet.

How do you test your data collection tool?

If it’s a survey, send it to four or five people in your target population and tell them to fill it out like they normally would and get back to you with any issues that came up. If you’re doing an observational study, pick a few sample cases and try using your defined method to do your assessment of those cases. This testing process will:

  • Help you adjust any final confusion or problem areas
  • Help you adjust language so that it is better suited to the audience, etc.

Congratulations!  Ready for the next step?Step 8: Start Collecting >>



rev. 04-Aug-2022




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