Specificfeatures and differences between survey and focus group approaches in socialresearch.
Summing up the resultsof the conducted research with the help of focus groups and surveys, we may outlinesome of the advantages and limitations of both methods.The main advantage ofsurveys is their wide coverage and the ability to collect the necessaryinformation from large number of respondents. Surveys do not require largefinancial costs.
However, in the abovestudy there were difficulties in understanding and correct interpretation of somequestions in the questionnaire. As the majority of respondents did notunderstand the issues related to the content of households, they could simplychoose one of the options provided in “closed” questions. And this, inturn, influenced the reliability of information in the process of dataanalysis. Another shortcoming in household surveys was the lack of data.
Sincethe questionnaire contained few “open” questions, to whichparticipants had to state their answers, they were omitted by respondentsbecause of insufficient literacy of population. This negatively affected thevalidity of the data obtained.Unlike the surveysmethod, in the second study there were no problems with reliability andvalidity of the data obtained.
Questions of interest to the researcher werepresented to participants in the focus group discussions, where they were ableto give their own ideas and provide specific information on a given issue. Moreover, theopportunity to ask participants to explain their motivations can be pointed outas an additional advantage of focus groups.Nevertheless, in thesecond research due to the insignificant sample size, generalisability wasweak. In contrast, research conducted by survey allowed to generalise thefindings.Summing up, theseexamples demonstrate the ability of focus groups and surveys to provideasymmetric but independent observations that enhance the ability to drawconclusions, as well as confidence in the very nature of the findingsthemselves.