Creating a Questionnaire: Your Guide to Success
When facing the task of creating a questionnaire, it is best to remember that this is a type of writing is somewhat like a written interview. Unlike face to face interviews, a questionnaire offers far more versatility, allowing face to face, telephone and handwritten surveys.
The primary benefit of creating a questionnaire is that the interviewer does not need to be present, although there are many other advantages for collecting information in this manner. OZessay professional writers will gladly help you with your questionnaire.
What is a Questionnaire?
Creating a Questionnaire is like writing a survey, a tool commonly used for gathering large amounts of information for those who do not have an equally large budget. Since most questionnaires can be utilized without much investment, this popular form of data collection is considered to be cheap and efficient. Additionally, when needing to collect data from larger demographics, questionnaires have proven to be great time savers where the face to face or telephone interview process seems highly impractical.
Open-Ended and Closed-Ended Questions
Typically, questionnaires are normally comprised of a mixture of open-ended and closed-ended questions which allows researchers to collect both quantitative and qualitative data. While they come in many different forms, you may recall that closed-ended questions have a list of predetermined answers for those being interviewed to select from. Open-ended questions provide the interviewee an opportunity to answer more candidly, often using a fill-in-the-blank format.
As you might guess, open-ended questions are best suited for interviewing smaller demographics while closed-ended questions are ideal for interviewing and collecting data from large groups of people. In today’s busy world, you may also find that interviewees prefer questionnaires using the speedier answering process of the closed-ended questions as they take far less time to complete.
Determining the Limitations of your Questionnaire
A limitation of open-ended questions might exist if your targeted demographic does not possess the necessary writing and spelling skills needed to fully respond to the questions. This could be due to a lack of education or the ability to express one’s thoughts and feelings through writing. However, there are also keen advantages. For example, open-ended questions allow the respondent to inject personality and attitude which gives researchers the opportunity to collect a more elaborate and detailed response.
Questionnaire Example of an Open-Ended Question:
Question: Please state your job title and the list of duties you are expected to perform on any given day.
Fill in the Blank: _____________________________________________________________
Closed-ended questions also offer certain limitations to the questionnaire process by providing a nominal amount of data within any given category. Since there is a clear lack of personal detail using this structure for questioning, researchers are left to wonder if the responses chosen will actually reflect the respondent’s true feelings regarding the issue. Even so, these types of questions are ideal for collecting data from a large demographic as they are quick to answer, highly economical and easily checked for reliability.
Questionnaire Example of a Closed-Ended Question:
Question: I have witnessed or experienced special treatment firsthand in the workplace.
Select one: strongly agree - agree - neutral - disagree - strongly disagree - unable to answer
There are several other formats used for both open-ended and closed-ended questions but by viewing these questionnaire examples, you can clearly see the advantages and limitations researchers might come against while collecting data. It is for this reason that many questionnaires offer a mixture of both types of questions.
Occasionally, you will also see a closed-ended questionnaire with specific responses for interviewees to check yes or no, followed by a blank section at the bottom for additional remarks. This allows the researchers to gain additional information about the person completing the questionnaire, although these responses may prove to be difficult to categorize for the benefit of the survey.
Why Use a Questionnaire?
Creating a questionnaire allows researchers to ask respondents for specific information and receive direct answers which serves several purposes, including:
• The collection of appropriate data
• Gathering date into comparable categories for research and analysis
• Reduce bias by formulating and asking every respondent the same question
• Increase variety and levels of engagement with survey questions
While questionnaires are highly useful and economical, it is believed that these forms of research are designed to support other data and should not be considered a stand-alone or comprehensive form of evaluation for any demographic.
Questionnaires Rely on Honest Answers
Many reasons for this general consensus regarding questionnaires exist, but the primary concern is simply the honesty of the respondent and the validity of his or her response. Not that most respondents are inherently bad, but the concern is that they may not be completely honest in filling out the questionnaire due to social factors.
For example, most respondents would prefer to share a positive image of themselves with researchers than admit to something that might be undesirable or unattractive. For this reason, they may falsify answers in an effort to save face or support a more positive image. In open-ended questions, respondents have been known to exaggerate or to be dishonest in their responses, leaving researchers to wonder how much trust to put into this form of data collection.
Creating a Questionnaire: Structure and Length
With a measure of creativity and a strong knowledge about your project goals, you can use questionnaire writing tips such as those listed below to minimize the disadvantages and enjoy the many benefits available to researchers. One of the ways you can ensure a successful questionnaire is by knowing the correct structure and length to use. A well-designed and easy to understand questionnaire that doesn’t take too terribly long to complete can also mean a higher response rate.
Top Questionnaire Writing Tips
Here are the key principals to take note of when looking for questionnaire writing tips, as these will offer the highest rate of success in data collection via the survey method:
Consider the goal. It is important to make sure that each and every question asked relates to the purpose and needs of the research being conducted and the data that will be collected.
Determine the appropriate length. It makes sense that the longer your questionnaire is, odds are, fewer people will be compelled to complete it, even if you opted for closed-ended questions. Make sure all of your questions are short, clear, and concise, leaving out unnecessary words or jargon.
Conduct a pilot study. When you conduct a pilot study, you are actually testing your questionnaire on a small group of people to see their reactions and responses. If the questionnaire is not successful with a few, it is not likely to fulfill your data and research needs. At the end of your pilot study, you can ask respondents for their honest feedback and ask for advice on how to make the questionnaire more successful and user-friendly.
Ensure the proper order of your questions. Due to the fact that you want respondents to answer all of the questions contained in your questionnaire, you should list the easiest ones at the beginning. Saving the more difficult questions for last has proven to be successful for those collecting data using surveys and questionnaires.
Reread the terminology used in the questionnaire. Are all of the questions easy to read and get directly to the point? You should avoid extremely long or complicated sentences and any technical jargon that might be difficult for the average person to understand. When questions are simple and straightforward, the respondent will find them easy to understand.
Does your questionnaire appear to be professional? People will participate in questionnaires if they feel the information will be beneficial, and not fall into the wrong hands. If your questionnaire does not look polished or professional, respondents may not trust sharing personal facts or information.
Don’t assume …include the instructions. Not everyone knows how to fill our a questionnaire so be sure to include clear and concise instructions. If your questionnaire is being mailed to respondents, consider marking the envelope in an appealing manner so it is not mistaken for junk mail.
Finding Help with Questionnaire Creation
Now that you know the value and benefits of creating a questionnaire, you may want to find help composing your own survey for data collection and research. For optimal results, you need a well-planned and successfully written questionnaire composed by the skillful writers at OZessay. With our confidential ordering system, you can discreetly order 100 percent original questionnaires to conduct your important research.
Go directly to the source when you need information about a specific demographic, large or small. Explore the above-mentioned questionnaire writing tips to create your own successful data collection project or hire highly educated writers who make creating a questionnaire look easy. Are you ready to experience OZessay’s writing expertise? Order now!