Checklist for the Documentation of Data Collection

How to draft a comprehensive Documentation of Data Collection

Here you find some short information that may help you in writing your Documentation of Data Collection.*

You can either browse through the single bullet points below or download the checklist for drafting a Documentation of Data Collection as a PDF-file.


  • Methodology of sampling and its rationale; if applicable, information on corrections during the research process or after the pretest
  • In case of research collaborations and/or international projects, specifications should be described; if different approaches were necessary, the differences should be described; this may also include different legal situations and licensing obligations in the participating countries

Description of survey group

  • Description of case characteristics
  • Socio-demographic data
  • Regional and social positioning
  • Declaration about informed consent

Methods & data compilation

  • Explanation of method selection
  • Information on preparation & implementation
  • Information on guideline design and pretest
  • Specifications about interviewers and their preparation

Interpretation & data quality

  • Description of evaluation method
  • Coding, QDA-software, code-lists
  • Description of the labour division in case of teamwork
  • Feedback effects of findings on the research process
  • Validity evaluation measures

Data security, protection & privacy

  • Explanation on the procedure for anonymization or pseudonymization
  • Security measures

Reference framework

  • Presentation of the literature and other sources of information used for the study; bearing in mind that secondary use may be far in the future.


  • Ethical considerations
  • Empirical challenges

*The checklist is based on Susanne Kretzer (2013): Infrastruktur für qualitative Forschungsprimärdaten – Zum Stand des Aufbaus eines Datenmanagementsystems von Qualiservice. In: Huschka, D. et al.: Forschungsinfrastrukturen für die qualitative Sozialforschung. Berlin: Scivero.