NCompass Live: Conducting Surveys I: Introduction and Questionnaire Design

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Tackling the job of conducting a survey for your library can be daunting. A systematic and quality-driven approach will yield results which can provide valuable information to decision-makers and stakeholders. This first in a three-part series of workshops on conducting surveys will demystify the survey process, from beginning to end of your project.
This first workshop of the three-part series addresses 1) the reasons for conducting a survey; 2) issues in effective questionnaire design, data collection and analysis, and reporting; and 3) questionnaire design, especially measurement, question content, and structure, including examples.

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NCompass Live: Conducting Surveys I: Introduction and Questionnaire Design

  1. 1. Conducting Surveys I<br />Introduction and<br />Questionnaire Design<br />NCompass Live – May 12, 2010<br />
  2. 2. About the presenter<br />Research Analyst<br />Special Projects Associate<br />Grant writer<br />Evaluator<br />Kathryn.Brockmeier@Nebraska.gov<br />402.471.4002<br />
  3. 3. About you<br />Your role<br />Library Director<br />Library Staff Member<br />Trustee<br />Friends/Foundation Board Member<br />Your credentials<br />
  4. 4. About you, cont’d.<br />
  5. 5. About this presentation<br />Reasons for conducting a survey<br />Questionnaire design, data collection and analysis, and reporting<br />Measurement, question content, and structure<br />Examples<br />
  6. 6. 1) Information needs for…<br />Strategic plan<br />Marketing plan<br />Budget justification<br />Return on investment<br />Grant writing, fundraising<br />Capacity building<br />Feasibility study<br />Needs assessment<br />Program planning<br />Program evaluation<br />
  7. 7. What’s the goal?<br />Building customer/patron loyalty<br />Identifying attractive prospects<br />Focusing on high potential customers/patrons<br />Predicting future usage patterns<br />Improving return on investment<br />Identifying new products and services<br />
  8. 8. What’s the question?<br />Opportunities, problems, challenges, barriers<br />Service, programming, accessibility needs<br />Satisfaction, performance<br />Expectations, reputation<br />Value, worth<br />Comparison to existing data<br />Usage patterns<br />Snapshot<br />
  9. 9. Respondents<br />Users<br />Patrons<br />Visitors<br />One-time<br />Regulars<br />Age, Ethnicity, Gender, Disability, Geography, Income<br />Type of check-outs<br />Type of questions<br />Non-users<br />Potential users<br />Admirers, loyalty<br />Aware<br />Informed<br />Unaware<br />Uninformed<br />Computer owners<br />Book buyers<br />
  10. 10. Pros and cons<br />Advantages<br />No interviewer bias<br />Inexpensive<br />Repeatable<br />Often gains thoughtful answers<br />More respondents<br />Candid responses if confidentiality is ensured<br />Easy to analyze<br />Disadvantages<br />Doesn’t ensure qualified respondents<br />Low response rate<br />Inability to gain further detail / probe<br />Poor turnaround time<br />
  11. 11. 2) Survey research<br />The study of attitudes, beliefs, and behavior of people and their settings through questionnaires administered by mail, e-mail, handouts, personal and telephone interviews, and the Internet<br />
  12. 12. Surveys<br />Questionnaire<br />Mail, paper-and-pencil<br />Group-administered<br />Internet<br />E-mail<br />Interview<br />Personal<br />Telephone<br />
  13. 13. Design<br />Ease of use<br />Length<br />Sensitivity<br />Layout<br />Language<br />Pretesting and revision<br />
  14. 14. Data collection<br />Target audience<br />Sampling<br />Incentives<br />Confidentiality/anonymity<br />
  15. 15. Method of administration<br />Paper-and-pencil (Self report, face-to-face, telephone)<br />Electronic (e-mail)<br />Online/Internet<br />
  16. 16. Data analysis<br />Descriptive statistics<br />Qualitative vs. quantitative data<br />Coding<br />
  17. 17. Reporting<br />Title page<br />Table of contents<br />Introduction and objectives<br />Executive summary or highlights<br />Conclusions and recommendations<br />Complete findings of the study<br />Supporting charts and graphs<br />Appendixes<br />
  18. 18. 3) Questionnaire design<br />Questionnaire:<br /> A research instrument consisting of a series of questions and other prompts for the purpose of gathering information from respondents <br />
  19. 19. Measurement<br />Operational definition<br />Validity<br />Reliability<br />
  20. 20. Measurement, cont’d.<br />Attitude<br />Behavior<br />Intention<br />Attributes<br />Other characteristics<br />Classification <br /> (demographics)<br />
  21. 21. Question content<br />Dichotomous<br />Multichotomous<br />Scales<br />Open-ended<br />
  22. 22. Structure<br />General to specific<br />Question sequence<br />Filters<br />Skip patterns<br />Length<br />
  23. 23. Structure, cont’d.<br />Introduction<br />Body<br />Encouragement<br />Note of thanks<br />Referral for questions<br />
  24. 24. 4) Examples<br />Disclaimer<br />
  25. 25. Introduction (Ex. 1)<br />Happyplace Public Library would like to find out where we are now as a library. We would like to learn a little bit about your library experiences at Happyplace Public Library. The information gathered from the following survey may help us evaluate, plan, and shape some of our future thinking about our library and the various needs of our patrons.<br />Your opinions are very important to us, and your responses will remain confidential. Please take a moment to fill out this questionnaire, and return it to Happyplace Public Library in the accompanying envelope by February 29th. Thank you!<br />
  26. 26. Introduction (Ex. 2)<br />The Nebraska Library Commission is in the process of gathering information from 21st Century Librarian Scholarship recipients to find out how the scholarship program worked for them and if they have completed their degree program.<br />Please take a few moments to complete this questionnaire about your experiences. This is for evaluation purposes and we will use some of the information in our federal grant report where we will discuss the outcomes of our recruitment activities and share the "stories" of how the scholarships have contributed to the developing library careers of scholarship recipients. When given the opportunity to comment, please do so in whatever detail you care to provide.<br />
  27. 27. Assurance of confidentiality<br />Your responses will remain confidential.<br />No identifying information will be attached to your answers.<br />Your responses will be combined with like responses.<br />
  28. 28. Q1. Scale<br />Overall, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with the services the library provides to the community?<br />Very satisfied<br />Somewhat satisfied<br />Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied<br />Somewhat dissatisfied<br />Very dissatisfied<br />
  29. 29. Q2. Dichotomous<br />Do you have a library card?<br />Yes<br />No<br />(Don’t know)<br />
  30. 30. Q3. Multichotomous & skip<br />When was the last time you visited the library?<br />Today<br />In the last week<br />In the last two weeks<br />In the last month<br />In the last six months<br />In the last year<br />It’s been over a year since I visited the library<br />I’ve never visited the library (Skip to Question #)<br />
  31. 31. Q4. Multichotomous<br />If you recall, what was the purpose of your most recent visit to the library? You may include today’s visit. (Check all that apply)<br />Use the computer lab<br />Browse books, DVDs, CDs or other items<br />Read magazines or newspapers<br />Attend a program<br />Use the copy machine<br />Check out an item for myself<br />Check out an item for my child<br />Return items<br />Browse books<br />Other ________________________________<br />Don’t recall<br />
  32. 32. Q5a. Scale<br />To what extent was the result of your most recent visit what you expected? / How did your most recent visit to the library meet your expectations?<br />Better than I expected<br />Just as I expected<br />Worse than I expected<br />Don’t recall<br />I’ve never visited the library<br />
  33. 33. Q5b. Scale<br />Overall, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your most recent library visit?<br />Very satisfied<br />Somewhat satisfied<br />Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied<br />Somewhat dissatisfied<br />Very dissatisfied<br />
  34. 34. Q5c. Scale<br />On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being very dissatisfied and 10 being very satisfied, how would you rate your most recent library visit? (Circle one)<br /> 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10<br />
  35. 35. Q6. Scale<br />Please rate the following services offered by Happyplace Public Library:<br />Cont’d.<br />
  36. 36. Q6. Scale, cont’d.<br />Bookmobile service<br />Assistance with finding a book or other materials<br />Catalog system<br />Assistance with using the catalog system<br />Check-out process<br />Notifications about fines<br />Customer service<br />Interlibrary loan service<br />Programming for adults<br />Programming for children<br />Programming for teens<br />Assessment of fines<br />Website<br />Comments: __________ ____________________________________________________________<br />
  37. 37. Q7. Scale<br />How satisfied or dissatisfied are you with the variety of the following items?<br />Cont’d.<br />
  38. 38. Q7. Scale, cont’d. & open-ended<br />Adult fiction books<br />Adult non-fiction/ self-help books<br />DVDs<br />Children’s books<br />Teen books<br />Books on tape<br />Books on CD<br />Magazines<br />Newspapers<br />Comments: ________ ________________________________________________________________________<br />
  39. 39. Transition<br />We’d like to know some details about your experience with programming at Happyplace Public Library.<br />
  40. 40. Q8. Scale<br />How likely are you to participate in adult programming in the next year/six months?<br />Very likely<br />Somewhat likely<br />Somewhat unlikely<br />Very unlikely<br />
  41. 41. Q9. Scale<br />How important is it to you that adult programming be offered to the community, through the library?<br />Very important<br />Somewhat important<br />Not very important<br />Not at all important<br />
  42. 42. Q10. Scale<br />If you have children under the age of 18 living at home, how likely are they to participate in children’s/teen programming in the next year/six months?<br />Very likely<br />Somewhat likely<br />Somewhat unlikely<br />Very unlikely<br />No children living at home<br />
  43. 43. Q11a. Dichotomous/filter<br />Do you have children under the age of 18 living at home?<br />Yes<br />No (Skip to Question 16)<br />If you have children under the age of 18 living at home, have they participated in the summer reading program in the past?<br />Yes<br />No<br />
  44. 44. Q11b. Dichotomous<br />If you have children under the age of 18 living at home, have they participated in the summer reading program in the past?<br />Yes<br />No<br />No children living at home<br />
  45. 45. Q12. Scale<br />How important is it to you that programming be offered to your children, through the library?<br />Very important<br />Somewhat important<br />Not very important<br />Not at all important<br />No children living at home<br />
  46. 46. Q12. Scale/open-ended<br />How important is it to you that programming be offered to children in the community, through the library?<br />Very important<br />Somewhat important<br />Not very important<br />Not at all important<br />Comments: __________________________<br />
  47. 47. Q13. Scale<br />How important is it to you that programming be offered to your teen(s), through the library?<br />Very important<br />Somewhat important<br />Not very important<br />Not at all important<br />No teens living at home<br />
  48. 48. Q14. Scale/open-ended<br />How important is it to you that programming be offered to teens in the community, through the library?<br />Very important<br />Somewhat important<br />Not very important<br />Not at all important<br />Comments: __________________________<br />
  49. 49. Q15. Scale<br />If you have children under the age of 18 living at home, how likely are they to participate in the upcoming summer reading program?<br />Very likely<br />Somewhat likely<br />Not very likely<br />Not at all likely<br />No children living at home<br />
  50. 50. Transition<br />Now we have some questions about Happyplace Public Library’s website…<br />
  51. 51. Q16. Multichotomous<br />When was the last time you visited Happyplace Library’s website, www.happyplace.com?<br />Today<br />In the last week<br />In the last two weeks<br />In the last month<br />In the last six months<br />In the last year<br />It’s been over a year since I visited the website<br />I’ve never visited the website<br />Don’t recall<br />
  52. 52. Q17. Scale<br />If you recall, overall, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your most recent visit to the library website?<br />Very satisfied<br />Somewhat satisfied<br />Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied<br />Somewhat dissatisfied<br />Very dissatisfied<br />I’ve never visited the website<br />Don’t recall<br />
  53. 53. Q18a. Open-ended<br />What was the purpose of your most recent visit to the library website?<br /> ____________________________________<br />
  54. 54. Q18b. Multichotomous<br />What was the purpose of your most recent visit to the library website? (Check all that apply)<br />To access a database<br />To learn about programs offered<br />To learn about services offered<br />To access the online catalog<br />To reserve a book<br />To get library contact information<br />To find out how to get a library card<br />Other _______________________________<br />
  55. 55. Q19. Scale<br />Please rate the ease of use of the library website to find/access information:<br />Excellent<br />Good<br />Fair<br />Poor<br />
  56. 56. Encouragement<br />Almost done…one more page!<br />We’re almost done. Just a few last questions…<br />Thank you for your time. Just a few more questions…<br />
  57. 57. Q20. Dichotomous/filter<br />Are you a fan of Happyplace Library on Facebook?<br />Yes<br />No<br />Don’t know<br />I don’t have a Facebook account<br />
  58. 58. Q21. Scale<br />What would you say is the library’s reputation in the community?<br />Excellent<br />Good<br />Fair<br />Poor<br />
  59. 59. Q22. Scale<br />To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements:<br />
  60. 60. Q22. Scale, cont’d.<br />The library provides valuable services to the community<br />The library has a good reputation in the community<br />The library has provided valuable services to me<br />I would recommend using the library to my friends and family<br />There’s room for improvement in the services the library provides<br />
  61. 61. Transition<br />We’d like to learn a little bit more about you…<br />Reminder about confidentiality<br />The following information will be used for demographic purposes only.<br />
  62. 62. Q23. Demographics<br />Gender:<br />Male<br />Female<br />
  63. 63. Q24. Demographics<br />Age:<br />Under 18<br />18-24<br />25-34<br />35-44<br />45-54<br />55-64<br />65-74<br />75 or over<br />
  64. 64. Q25. Demographics<br />Do you live… (Check all that apply)<br />Within city limits / In Happyplace<br />In Happy County<br />In BBB County<br />In CCC County<br />Other county ___________________<br />
  65. 65. Q26. Demographics<br />Length of time living in Happyplace:<br />I don’t live in Happyplace<br />Less than 1 year<br />1-5 years<br />6-10 years<br />11-20 years<br />21+ years<br />
  66. 66. Q27. Demographics<br />Highest level of education attained:<br />Less than high school<br />High school diploma/GED<br />Some college<br />Associate degree<br />Bachelor degree<br />Graduate degree<br />
  67. 67. Q28. Demographics<br />Race (check all that apply):<br />White<br />Black or African-American<br />American Indian and Alaska Native<br />Asian<br />Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander<br />Some other race ________________<br />
  68. 68. Q29. Demographics<br />Ethnicity:<br />Hispanic or Latino (of any race)<br />Not Hispanic or Latino<br />
  69. 69. Q30. Demographics<br />Household Income:<br />Less than $20,000<br />$20,000 to $29,999<br />$30,000 to $49,999<br />$50,000 to $74,999<br />$75,000+<br />
  70. 70. Open-ended questions<br />Comments:<br />Other (please specify):<br />If you have other comments for us about your experience with Happyplace Public Library, please provide it below:<br />Your name (optional):<br />
  71. 71. Note of thanks<br />Thank you for completing this questionnaire/survey. We appreciate your feedback!<br />
  72. 72. Note of thanks<br />Thank you for completing this questionnaire/survey. We appreciate your feedback!<br />
  73. 73. Referral for questions<br />If you have any questions regarding this survey, please contact Jane Smith at 402-555-0000 or jane.smith@happylib.org<br />
  74. 74. Next steps<br />Evaluation<br />
  75. 75. Print resources<br />Survey Research Methods by Floyd Fowler (Sage Publications)<br />Internet, Mail, and Mixed-Mode Surveys: The Tailored Design Method by Don Dillman (Wiley)<br />
  76. 76. Online resources<br />Research Methods Knowledge Base<br />http://www.socialresearchmethods.net/kb/survey.php<br />Writing Guide: Survey Research<br />http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/research/survey/<br />LRS Library User Surveys on the Web by Type of Library<br />http://www.lrs.org/usersurveys.php<br />Montana State Library Guidelines for Designing a Library Survey<br />http://msl.state.mt.us/For_Librarians/For_Public_Librarians/standards/PatronSurveys.doc<br />
  77. 77. Questions?<br />CE credit<br />Evaluation<br />
  78. 78. Related topics<br />Conducting Surveys II: Data Collection – June 9, 2010<br />http://www.nlc.state.ne.us/scripts/training/eventshow.asp?ProgID=9637<br />Conducting Surveys III: Analyzing Data and Reporting Methods – July 14, 2010<br />http://www.nlc.state.ne.us/scripts/training/eventshow.asp?ProgID=9638<br />Archived: Surveys, Focus Groups & Observation, or How to find out stuff from people in your community – March 10, 2010<br />http://www.nlc.state.ne.us/scripts/training/eventshow.asp?ProgID=9552<br />
  79. 79. Upcoming sessions<br />Cataloging with RDA: An Overview – May 19<br />http://www.nlc.state.ne.us/scripts/training/eventshow.asp?ProgID=9522<br />Tech Talk with Michael Sauers – May 26<br />http://www.nlc.state.ne.us/scripts/training/eventshow.asp?ProgID=9475<br />Communication—Getting the Word Out: Does your audience hear what you mean? – June 23<br />http://www.nlc.state.ne.us/scripts/training/eventshow.asp?ProgID=9510<br />

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