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Principles of Questionnaire Construction Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

General Principles

Rule*
Prin­ciple
Comm­ent
1
Make sure the questi­onnaire items match your research object­ives.
Leave out any quesions you do not really need. Try to keep questions short.
2
Understand your research partic­ipants.
Age, level of education, language skills, literacy skills, famili­arity with the Topic.
3
Use natural and familiar language.
Avoid jargon or technical terms. Take time to define or explain any special terms you may be using.
4
Write items that are clear, precise, and relatively short.
Be clear, even if it means the question will be a bit longer.
5
Do not use “leading” or “loaded” questions.
Sometimes leading questions can be effective, but be careful.
6
Avoid double­-ba­rreled questions.
Asking two questions at once.
7
Avoid double negatives.
Word things carefully. People will read things quickly and make wrong assump­tions..
8
Determine whether an open-ended or a closed­-ended question is needed.
It is often good to use a mix of different formats.
9
Use mutually exclusive and exhaustive response categories for closed­-ended questions.
Make it clear how everyone should respond. Include "Not Applic­abl­e" or "Skip to Question ?" if that will help.
10
Consider the different types of response categories available for closed­ended questi­onnaire items.
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11
Use multiple items to measure abstract constr­ucts.
Have multiple items so that we can get an "­ave­rag­e" reesponse. Consider asking the same question in a slightly different ways.
12
Consider using multiple methods when measuring abstract constr­ucts.
Try this if you have a long list of questions. Probably warn people about this.s
13
Use caution if you reverse the wording in some of the items to prevent response sets in multi-item scales.
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14
Develop a questi­onnaire that is easy for the partic­ipant to use.
Easy and Clear. Sometimes longer and better instru­ctions or explan­ations will make things easier.
15
Always pilot test your questi­onn­aire.
Several times if possible