Formulating Open-ended Questions for Surveys

Formulating Open-ended Questions for Surveys
Formulating Open-ended Questions for Surveys

Principal speaker

Dr Judy Rose

This workshop provides a practical guide to the formulation of open-ended questions (OEQs) in surveys. First, we review the purpose of OEQs in survey questionnaires (e.g., to prompt for detail, gather unexpected insights, and allow the respondent to express views within their own frame of reference). Then, we demonstrate how to write OEQs using clear, non-leading and accessible language that will encourage the less fluent writers to answer with ease and without invoking a response burden. Next, we suggest options for the sequencing of OEQs and explain the potential impact of order effects. For example, we look at how placing OEQs in the beginning, middle and end of a survey can affect the quality of responses. We then provide a review of the effect of other dynamic features, such as the sizing and placement of open text boxes, in an online survey environment. Finally, we prepare you to apply these guidelines to your own research questionnaire. This workshop is suitable for those new to writing open-ended questions for surveys, and those who have some experience but would like to further refine their practice.

Format: This workshop will be delivered online during a 2.5-hour period, via Collaborate, with active learning activities and including ½ hour Q & A.

Pre-requisites: While the workshop caters to beginners through to intermediate level, it is beneficial to think about how OEQs relate to your own research questions and/or the underlying conceptual framework.

Relationship to other RED workshops. This workshop is a companion for the workshops on evaluating survey questions "Qualitative Validation of Surveys' and also preparing these kinds of questions in another context, via "Formulating Close-ended Questions for Interviews'.

Recommended Reading, before attending. Please read pages 1-3 of

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