Developing Effective Surveys. Steve Culver, Ph.D. Associate Director Office of Academic Assesment 122 Hillcrest (0157) firstname.lastname@example.org September, 2009. Today’s Agenda. Discuss survey design as a process Provide tips to enhance the quality of the process and therefore the data.
Steve Culver, Ph.D.
Office of Academic Assesment
122 Hillcrest (0157)
more control, sometimes can collect more data
fairly controlled setting, can ask for clarification, but phone screening, fewer hours at home
Respondent can complete at leisure, can include pictures; no control over who completes survey, potential illegible data; bias - literacy
more consistent (reliable) than human interviewer, but no human element to identify problems, no control over data errors; respondents give longer answers to open-ended questions.
say thank you, ask them for advice, make questionnaire interesting
avoid subordinating language, don’t embarrass the respondent, make it quick and easy to respond
make the questionnaire seem important, provide a sense of legitimate authority, provide a token
--allow for maximum variability (no more than 10; less than h.s. educ., 5)
--use a balanced scale
--“neutral” or “no opinion” vs. “don’t know” (odd/even number of responses)
--Order response categories in a logical way
does the respondent ask for clarification?
How long does it take to answer each question?
Dillman, D. A. (1978). Mail and telephone surveys: The total design method. NY: Wiley.
Porter, S. (2004). Pros and cons of paper and electronic surveys, overcoming survey research problems new Directions for Institutional Research, 121, 91-99.
Frary, R. B. (1996). Brief guide to questionnaire development. Washington, DC: ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and evaluation.
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