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Questionnaire

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  • 1. By Sheryl B. Satorre QUESTIONNAIRE
  • 2. Questionnaire
    • A questionnaire is a research instrument consisting a series of questions and other prompts for the purpose of gathering information from respondents.
    • It was invented by Sir Francis Galton, and is often used in behavioral or social research.
    • When properly constructed and responsibly administered, questionnaires become a vital instrument by which statements can be made about specific groups or people or entire populations.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 3. Advantages of the Questionnaire
    • The questionnaire is easy to construct. Distribution is easy and inexpensive.
    • Responses are easy to tabulate.
    • The respondent’s replies are free.
    • Confidential information may be given freely.
    • The respondent can fill out the questionnaire at will.
    • The respondent can give more accurate replies.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 4. Disadvantages of a Questionnaire
    • The questionnaire cannot be used with those who cannot read or write well, especially those who are totally illiterate.
    • If many respondents may not returned the filled up copies of the questionnaire purposely or forgetfully, considerable follow-ups are necessary.
    • If a respondent gives wrong information, it cannot be corrected at once.
    • A respondent may leave some or many questions unanswered because nobody urges him to do so or he may not understand the significance of the information he gives.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 5.
    • Some questions may be vague and so the respondent may not answer them or if he does, he may give wrong replies.
    • The number of choices may be so limited that the respondent may be forced to select responses that are not his actual choices.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 6. Construction of a Questionnaire
    • Doing library search. Do some library research among studies similar to yours. There may be some questionnaires similar to what you want to use. They may serve as guides in constructing yours.
    • Talking to knowledgeable people. Talk to people who have some knowledge about the construction of questionnaires. You may be able to get some ideas from them.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 7.
    • Mastering the guidelines. There are guidelines in the construction of a questionnaire. You learn these from books and similar studies in your library search and from your interviews with knowledgeable people. Master the guidelines.
    • Writing the questionnaire. Write the questionnaire following the guidelines as closely as possible.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 8.
    • Editing the questionnaire. After the questionnaire has been finished, show it for correction and suggestions for improvement to people who are known to posses adequate knowledge in the construction of questionnaire.
    • Rewriting the questionnaire. Rewrite the questionnaire according to the corrections and suggestions.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 9.
    • Pretesting the questionnaire. This is called a dry run. This the process of measuring the effectiveness, validity, and reliability of the questionnaire, and determining the clarity of the items, the difficulty of answering the questions, the proper length of time in answering, ease in tabulating responses, and other problems.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 10. Types of Questions asked in Survey Questionnaires
    • According to form
      • The free-answer type
      • The guided response type
    • According to the kind of data asked for
      • Descriptive (verbal) data
      • Quantified (numerical) data
      • Intensity of feeling, emotion, or attitude
      • Degree of judgment
      • Understanding
      • Reasoning
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 11. Guidelines in the Formulation of Questions for a Questionnaire
    • It has been said before that a questionnaire is a set of planned questions which, when answered properly, would supply the needed data for a research problem or topic.
    • Hence, the questions should be formulated properly and appropriately to be able to secure the necessary information.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 12. The following are useful guidelines in the construction of questions for a questionnaire:
    • Make all directions clear and unequivocal. As much as possible make all directions clear, definite, unequivocal and brief. There should also be a direction for every type of questions. See to it that the respondent knows exactly what to do.
    • Example: Poor direction for a multiple question:
    • Answer the following questions.
    • Better: Choose the items or options that would best answer the question and write a check mark on the space before each option. You may have more than one choice.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 13.
    • Use correct grammar. Punctuation marks especially should be placed properly to avoid misinterpretation.
    • Example of poor grammar:
    • Please accomplish the questionnaire as soon as possible return it.
    • Better:
    • Please accomplish the questionnaire and return it as soon as possible.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 14.
    • Make all questions unequivocal. As much as possible make all questions brief, clear, and unequivocal. Avoid making double barreled questions, questions which can be interpreted in two ways.
    • Example: Are you employed or not?
    • This is not a doubled barreled question because actually there are two questions. One is: Are you employed? The other is: Are you not employed? This type of question cannot be answered by yes or no without qualifying the answer. If your answer is affirmative, it should be: Yes, I am employed. If you answer in the negative the answer should be: No, I am not employed.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 15.
    • Example of a vague question: Are you a graduate?
    • Better:
    • Are you a high school graduate? (Specify the course)
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 16.
    • Avoid asking biased questions. A biased question is one in which there is a veiled suggestion for an answer.
    • Example:
    • Do you use Colgate toothpaste? If not, what brand do you use?
    • In this question there is a veiled suggestion to make Colgate as the answer. The respondent may think that because Colgate is mentioned, it is the best toothpaste and he has the tendency to say yes.
    • Better:
    • Which brand of toothpaste do you use?
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 17.
    • Objectify the responses. This is for the standardization of responses and easier tabulation.
    • Example: Why do you use Camay soap?
    • The replies can be checked only.
    • ____It is fragrant.
    • ____It makes my skin smoother.
    • ____It is cheap.
    • ____It is available all the time.
    • ____It lasts long.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 18.
    • Relate all questions to the topic under study. All questions should gather data relevant to the study.
    • If the study is about the teaching of science, all questions should gather data that have something to do with the teaching of science. If the study is about the teaching of mathematics, all questions should gather data that have something to do with the teaching of mathematics.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 19.
    • Create categories or classes for approximate answers. There are questions which cannot be given exact answers and so there is a necessity of creating categories or classes to accommodate the approximate replies. Such classes or groupings may be qualitative or quantitative.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 20.
    • Qualitative
    • How efficient is your teacher?
    • ____Very efficient
    • ____Efficient
    • ____Fairly efficient
    • ____Inefficient
    • ____Very inefficient
    • Quantitative
    • How many sticks of cigarettes do you consume a day?
    • ____ 0 – 4
    • ____ 5 – 9
    • ____ 10 – 14
    • ____ 15 – 19
    • ____ 20 - 24
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 21.
    • Group the questions in logical sequence. Some ways of groupings are:
      • Questions may be grouped according to the specific questions under the statement of the problem. All questions that gather data to answer one specific question under the statement of the problem should be grouped together.
      • Questions that deal with items that are logically and usually placed together under a big category should be grouped together.
      • In each grouping, easier questions should be asked first.
      • Questions should be given in succession steps if the topic of study is a process such as baking a cake, constructing a house, preserving foods, etc.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 22.
    • Questions may be grouped according to the specific questions under the statement of the problem.
    • Example:
    • How qualified are the teachers handling science?
    • All questions dealing with degrees earned, majors or specializations, eligibilities, seminars attended, special trainings attended, teaching experiences, and aptitude should be grouped together.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 23.
      • Questions that deal with items that are logically and usually placed together under a big category should be grouped together.
    • Example:
    • Questions about age, gender, civil status, date of birth, place of birth, ethnic origin, native language, etc. should be grouped under personal data.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 24.
    • Create sufficient number of response categories. This is to make possible the inclusion of the correct choice of the respondent. If the correct choice of the respondent is not included among the response categories and he is required to make, his reply would be wrong.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 25.
    • Ex. of limited number of response categories:
    • Do you agree that the presidential form of government is better than the parliamentary form?
    • ____Agree
    • ____Disagree
    • If the respondent does not know which is better, either he does not answer the question, or if he is forced to make a response, either reply will be wrong.
    • It would be better to make a room for a number of responses:
    • ___Strongly agree
    • ___Agree
    • ___Uncertain or No comment
    • ___Disagree
    • ___Strongly disagree
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 26.
    • Word carefully or avoid questions that deal with confidential or embarrassing information.
    • Example:
    • Suppose a woman becomes unfaithful to her husband and you want to find the reasons why she became unfaithful to her husband. This is in connection with your study of family relations.
    • Poor question: Why did you become unfaithful to your husband? (This is already telling her that she is unfaithful and this will surely embarrass her.)
    • Better: What, in your own opinion, are the reasons why wives sometimes fall in love with men other than their own husbands? (Supply all possible reasons and she will choose those which she experienced.)
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 27.
    • Explain and illustrate difficult questions. Difficult questions such as those employing some unfamiliar technical terms should be made clear by added explanations and/or illustrations.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 28.
    • State all questions affirmatively. If negative statements are unavoidable, underline the negative word to avoid misinterpretation.
    • Example: Are you not studying?
    • Better: Are you studying?
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 29.
    • Make as many questions as would supply adequate information for the study. The study is only as complete as the completeness of the data used. If some important data are missing, the worth of the inquiry is very much reduced particularly its accuracy and validity.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 30.
    • Add a catch-all word or phrase to options of multiple response questions. This is necessary for any additional information that the respondent may want to give.
    • Example:
    • Why did you stop your studies?
    • _____I am too poor. I cannot afford.
    • _____I married early.
    • _____I lost interest. _____My family moved to a place too far from school.
    • _____Others, please specify.
    • The word “Others” is the catch-all-word.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 31.
    • Place all spaces for replies at the left side. As much as possible, place all spaces for replies at the left side of the questionnaire for easy tabulation. The spaces should be in a straight vertical column.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 32.
    • Make the respondents anonymous. This is to make them give information more freely and more accurately. Respondents are reluctant and even refuse to give information about confidential and/or embarrassing matters if they are not made anonymous.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 33. Evidence of Misleading Questions (Treece and Treece Jr, p. 189)
    • All-or-none responses. If all or most of the answers are in the same direction, such as all “yes” or all “no”, there is something wrong with the question. An example is “Are you in favor of good health?” Naturally the answer is “yes”.
    • Considerable difference in responses when the order is changed. This may be a change in the word order of an item or a change in the order of the questions.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 34.
    • High proportion of omission or “no response.” If so many questions are left unanswered, either the question is overlooked, or it is unclear, or it is offensive, or there is no place where to write the answer.
    • High proportion of “don’t know” or “don’t recall”. These responses indicate that the items are improperly stated or inappropriate. This is why pretesting is necessary to discover these defects.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 35.
    • High proportion of “other” answers. This is an indication that the choices or options for selection are either inadequate or inappropriate. Enough options should be provided and their appropriateness should be studied carefully.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 36.
    • Considerable number of added comments. If there are many comments on the margins or at the end of the items, this indicates the enthusiasm of the respondent or weakness of the items. If the comments are irrelevant, the items are either unclear or the alternatives are inappropriate.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 37.
    • Example:
    • Why are you studying to become a teacher?
    • The options or choices are:
    • ______I love to teach children.
    • ______I can have a good job.
    • ______I want to work in an office.
    • The options are inadequate. The respondent may add “There are not enough choices.” and then adds “This is the kind of service I want to render to my people.” Besides, “I want to work in an office.” is an inappropriate because teaching is not working in an office.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 38. The Cover Letter
    • Every copy of the questionnaire to be sent to a respondent should be accompanied by a cover letter which should certain among other things the following:
      • The purpose of the questionnaire or study
      • Who is sanctioning, endorsing, or sponsoring the study
      • What will be done with the information gathered by the questionnaire
      • The reason why the respondent should answer the questionnaire and giving importance to the respondent
      • The deadline date for the return of the questionnaire
      • A guaranty of the anonymity of the respondent and the confidentiality of the information given by him
      • An expression of gratitude for the respondent’s participation in the study
      • An offer to inform the respondent of the results of the study if he is interested
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 39. The Cover Letter
    • The letter should be written as courteously and cordially as possible by making it very personal and neatly printed or typed bearing the actual signature of the researcher.
    • The sponsoring or endorsing person should be selected on the basis of his influence upon the respondents.
    August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre
  • 40. August 26, 2011 S. B. Satorre Thank you.

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