In this section I am going to describe how the enquiry process can be improved by questioning how the reliability of the methods used to collect the data have affected the accuracy of the results and validity of the conclusion.Land use surveyIn this section I recorded the ground floor functions only of each shop and service in my specified street. One limitation is that the functions could have changed since I have last visited the shopping centre considering how bad today’s economic climate is. Another limitation is the fact that I individually, classified shops and services and therefore could have got it wrong and classified a shop as comparative where it was actually convenience.Also the map where I recorded my data on could have been different to the actual shopping centre itself, as it has changed over years. I could have improved on this part of my coursework by going back to each centre and double checking to see if the data I have collected is correct.
By doing the land use survey it helped to prove that Buxton has more comparison shops and services than Chorlton, but my data may not be 100% correct so therefore the results may not be accurate or reliable.Pedestrian countA major consideration in this part of my study was the weather. This is because if the weather was rainy and dull on one of the days I visited the centre not as many people would be out, and then if one of the days was nice and sunny when I visited the other shopping centre more people would have been out, therefore it would have been unfair. Thankfully when I visited my centres on both days the weather was rather similar as it was cloudy with sunny intervals.
A second limitation is that a person could have walked past you more than once and you have counted that person twice or more without realising therefore your results are not accurate. The number of different sites in the shopping centres differs as there are 12 sites in Buxton but only 6 in Chorlton.This is because Chorlton is a much smaller shopping centre and does not need as many sites. When doing the pedestrian count in Buxton it was all done at the same time as there was 12 groups but because there was only me in Chorlton counting the pedestrians I had to visit the sites at different times and this could have affected my results.
I had one problem when collecting this data as I only has a watch to tell me when 10 minutes were up and it was not precise so therefore I could have gone over my time limit or under so if I had to repeat this study I would have used a stopwatch. By doing the pedestrian count it helped to prove the hypothesis Buxton is more an attractive centre than Chorlton as if one centre has more people it has to be more attractive.QuestionnaireThis method of data collection was central to my study as many questionnaires led me to decide the position of my shopping centre on the shopping hierarchy. The main limitation for this was the fact that sample size differed between each centre. In Buxton the class grouped all of the data they collected that day which adds up to a total of 219 people, but in Chorlton there was only me and I was only able to ask 35 people, so therefore as more people was asked in Buxton the results are more reliable compared to Chorlton.Sampling technique is another limitation, as mentioned in the methodology section. One person could have been asked the same questionnaire more than once, so you have the same response twice.
Another limitation is the timing of the day or the day of the week, I visited both Buxton and Chorlton on a Wednesday so it would have been fair but I did visit Chorlton in the Easter term so more people might have been out in Chorlton than expected.Also in Buxton I did my questionnaire in the morning but in Chorlton I did my questionnaire around dinner time, so more people who might have been working were out on the lunch break and this could have effected my data and the responses I got. The weather condition is also a problem for the same reason I mentioned before. Design and architecture of the centres is also a major limitation. Buxton has a pedestrian precinct as it is a tourist and spa town but because Chorlton is a commuter belt it lays on two main roads which are always congested and noisy, so there was a winder range of people to ask in Buxton and therefore have a wider ranger of answers. If I collected more data in Chorlton then my answer might be different and more reliable. I had many problems when trying to collect the data as people refused to take the time out to talk to me and answer my questions. By doing this questionnaire it has helped me to prove that all three of my hypothesis is true.
Environmental survey It was my own opinion on each aspect at each site. Buxton came of better than Chorlton but this could have been because there were more sites to boost the marks up but on the other hand this could have been a disadvantage as it could have dragged the average mark down. I had to rate each site at different times so this could have caused problems, for example there might be more litter after lunch than before as people drop their packaging on the floor. I could have made my results more reliable by going back to the shopping centre and double checking my score I gave each site on each aspect. By doing the environmental survey it has helped me to prove that Buxton is more attractive than Chorlton as it as a higher average.Car tax disc surveyI collected 50 tax disc origins form both centres car parks. I made sure that the tax disc records were collected from a range of car parks.
In Buxton I collected my data form various car parks which included, the train station, the supermarket car park and the car park outside pavilion gardens. In Chorlton I collected my data from the only one car park which was the supermarket car park and then there were car parking spaces on the side of the road. I was careful to collect information at the same time of the day which I did as I collected my data in the afternoon.I had some trouble doing this as people enquired me why I was looking at their car, also many of the cars said DVLA which means they have been registered online. Another reason which might affect my outcome is that many people might have moved after they got there car taxed, so my answer might no be accurate for many reasons. By doing this study it helped me prove hypothesis two which is Buxton has a larger sphere of influence than Chorlton, as it shown that people did travel further to get to Buxton rather than Chorlton.