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When using secondary data, however, you have an opportunity to work with immensely large data sets that somebody else has already collected.
Furthermore, secondary research requires less time and less money (i.e., you don’t need to provide your participants with compensation for participating or pay for any other costs of the research).A third important advantage of secondary research is that you can base your project on a large scope of data.If you wanted to obtain a large data set yourself, you would need to dedicate an immense amount of effort.As an undergraduate or graduate student, your dissertation project won't need to be an expensive endeavour.Thus, it is useful to know that you can further reduce costs, by using freely available secondary data sets. Most students value another important advantage of secondary research, which is that secondary research saves you time.For instance, members of the research team should be paid salaries. You may need to pay for office space and equipment, and compensate your participants for taking part. These costs do not exist when doing secondary research.Although researchers may need to purchase secondary data sets, this is always less costly than if the research were to be conducted from scratch.So to recap, secondary research involves re-analysing, interpreting, or reviewing past data.The role of the researcher is always to specify how this past data informs his or her current research.What's more, if you were doing primary research, you would never be able to use longitudinal data in your graduate or undergraduate project, since it would take you years to complete.This is because longitudinal data involves assessing and re-assessing a group of participants over long periods of time.