One skill you’ll need to use a lot at university is data analysis, especially when you come to work on a research project. The Skills Centre has created a new resource on MySkills to help get you data-driven.
Why is data analysis important?
Collecting and analysing data basically allows you to investigate a hypothesis and reach an informed decision about it. Analysis and interpretation give your collected data meaning and really bring it to life.
Data analysis is also an increasingly valuable employability skill. It is predicted that jobs for data analysts will grow by 23% from now until 2031 (US, BLS, 2022), with many employers needing staff who can understand and interpret data in order to predict market trends and keep their businesses competitive.
For some people, analysing data may seem like a big challenge, especially if you haven’t done much of it in the past or you don’t feel confident with numbers. It is a complex skill, but well worth taking the time to develop during your studies.
Data analysis guide
The new guide on MySkills aims to provide an introduction to data and data analysis and brings useful resources together in one place.
It includes videos explaining the difference between quantitative and qualitative data, the importance of interpreting data, and some key tools you can use to organise and analyse your data.
The guide links to resources and blogs from the Mathematics Resources Centre (MASH) to help you plan and get started with a quantitative investigation. It also links to the Library’s guide on programming, data analysis and data visualisation languages and platforms.
MASH can help with each step of your data analysis. From installing statistical programs on your personal computer to interpreting your results. If you have problems along the way, such as your data doesn’t meet the assumptions of the test you would like to use, MASH can help with that too.
The daily MASH drop-in is a great place to go to ask a quick data question at any stage of your research project.
You can also book a 30-minute appointment with the MASH Statistics Advisory Service which provides statistics advice for students doing project work like final year, field study or research projects, and can also offer help with statistical packages.
If you’ve got any feedback about the data analysis guide, we’d love to hear from you! Please get in touch with us at email@example.com.