System analysis. Data collection methods describe data collection methods

System analysis

System analysis - the study of a complex process in order to improve its efficiency.

Research methodology is the specific procedures or techniques used to identify, select, process, and analyze information about a topic.

A problem is a situation that is unsatisfactory and causes difficulties for people.

Description of the current system is an explanation of the functionality, algorithms of its work, objects that interact with it.

Identifying user needs are aspects of the current system that require improvements or new features.

Research methods. Data collection methods


It’s used to obtain information from person through oral responses.
Interviewing is useful because... 

  • facts can be gathered directly from the people who have direct experience of the present system;
  • full and detailed answers can be obtained by pursuing particular lines of questioning.


  • Ask experts;
  • Collection of primary information;
  • Can easily add extra questions.


  • Time-consuming: setting up, interviewing, transcribing, analysing, feedback, reporting;
  • Different interviewers may understand and transcribe interviews in different ways.


Questionnaire is an instrument for collecting data, which almost always involves asking a given subject to respond to a set of oral or written questions. 

Questionnaires enable the same set of questions to be asked to many people. A carefully designed questionnaire can be a very quick and cheap way to obtain specific answers to specific questions from a large number of people.


  • Questionnaires are inexpensive;
  • Quick way to get results;
  • Respondent anonymity;
  • You gather information from a large audience.


  • Dishonest answers;
  • Unanswered questions;
  • Differences in understanding and interpretation;
  • Lack of personalization.


Observation of the current practice enables current methods of working to be examined and necessary exceptions to the normal pattern of working to be noted. It is both a physical and a mental activity. Observation is purposive and not casual.


  • A scientist looking at a chemical reaction in an experiment;
  • A zoologist watching lions hunting;
  • A fan watching a baseball game.


  • Reliable and objective;
  • Natural setting;
  • No need of equipment or tool; 
  • Useful for individuals as well as groups; 
  • Immediate detection of problems;
  • Easy to complete, saves time;
  • Can be used in natural or experimental settings.


  • Some of the occurrences may not be open to observation;
  • Not all occurrences lend themselves to observational study;
  • Lack of reliability;
  • Slow investigation;
  • Expensive.

Examination of documentation

Examination of the existing paperwork, documentation, records and procedure manuals can be used to identify the data that is used in the current system, the information that is produced by the current system and the procedures that are carried out.

Physical Evidence allows you to get information about past events, the observation of which is no longer possible. It can be articles, reports, user guides 

Flyers, posters, agendas, handbooks, and training materials, personal documents


  • efficient and effective way of gathering data because documents are manageable and practical resources;
  • documents are stable, meaning that they can be read and reviewed multiple times.


  • require some investigative skills;
  • small amount of useful data;
  • too much extra information.

Data analysis techniques

Analyzing Quantitative Data

Quantitative data is defined as the value of data in the form of counts or numbers where each data-set has an unique numerical value associated with it. 

  • Associated with numbers;
  • Implemented when data is numerical;
  • Collected data can be statistically analyzed;

Examples: Height, Weight, Time, Price, Temperature, etc.;


  • Produce in-depth analysis;
  • Specific themes and patterns identified;
  • Rich data leading to further research.


  • Data very hard to analyse/ generalise results;
  • Lack of objectivity as affected by researchers view.

Analyzing Qualitative Data

Associated with details;
Implemented when data can be segregated into well-defined groups;
Collected data can just be observed and not evaluated;
Examples: Scents, Appearance, Beauty, Colors, Flavors, etc.


  • Conduct in-depth research;
  • Minimum bias;
  • Accurate results.


  • Restricted information;
  • Depends on question type.


  1. Name three methods of data collection.
  2. Explain key differences between any two methods.


Ex. 1 (Author: Ermekova Ainagul - CS teacher of NIS Pavlodar)

Ex. 2 (Author: Litvinova Olga - CS teacher of NIS Pavlodar)

Ex. 3 (Author: Litvinova Olga - CS teacher of NIS Pavlodar)

Ex. 3 (Author: Ermekova Ainagul - CS teacher of NIS Pavlodar)

Exam exercises:

Q: A system analyst is appointed to investigate the newsagent's business. Desribe three ways that a system analyst could find out the necessary facts in order to plan a computer system. For each way, describe the benefits of that method. (Marks: 6)
  • Interview(1) - allow individuals to express unexpected views(1);
  • Questionnaire(1): structured answers are obtained, many people can be questioned(1);
  • Observation(1) - first-hand experience of the problems(1);
  • Examine documents (1) - permanent records visible, improvments can be suggested, group discussions(1).


Категория: Stages of SDLC | Добавил: bzfar77 (29.09.2020)
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