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Jolene D. Smyth

In: The SAGE Handbook of Survey Methodology

Chapter 16: Designing Questions and Questionnaires

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Designing Questions and Questionnaires
Designing questions and questionnaires
Jolene D. Smyth
INTRODUCTION

In theory, designing questions and questionnaires seems rather simple. Make a list of things you want to know and write questions about each one. A quick online search of the term ‘web survey’ will produce a number of online survey software providers using words like, ‘fast', ‘easy', ‘free', and ‘within minutes’ that suggest this is true.

The result is a strong sense that anyone can design questions and questionnaires; it is easy. But anyone who has ever thoughtfully designed a survey will know that, in reality, it requires one to make countless important decisions. For this reason, entire books have been written on how to do it well, and even seemingly simple decisions, such as how ...

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