So, you’ve decided on a research topic (‡nally!), have your data col lection tools ready and are prepped for getting in and “doing” your research. It’s time to move from planning research to actually doing it, but how do you start? Whom do you talk to? What steps can you take to ensure a relatively smooth data collection process? Data collection can be one of the most tenuous parts of the research process; it is a time when your research goals hinge on the generosity of others.