How to design a questionnaire for research?
In order to understand a good questionnaire design for research let’s first understand what is a questionnaire in research?
What are Questionnaires in research?
Questionnaires are a set of written questions designed to get standardized information about opinions, experiences, intentions, preferences, and behavior of individuals, and can be devised for the purposes of a scientific study.
6 steps to good Questionnaire design.
The following are steps in designing a good Questionnaire.
1. Identification of your research aims and goals of the questionnaire
1. Address what kind of information do you want to gather with your questionnaire?
2. What is the aim of your research?
3. What is your main objective?
4. What is the goal of the questionnaire?
2. Research your respondents
Research and identification of your questionnaire’s target audience are key to maximizing your study’s robustness.
3. Developing Questions
Smart questions are the cornerstone of every questionnaire. Questions need to be clear and phrased in a way that prevents any misunderstandings or ambiguities. Additionally, prefer to avoid technical language so that the question is fully understandable by anyone completing the questionnaire.
4. Choose your Question type
There are different ways to phrase questions. In explorative questionnaires mainly open questions are where participants can fill in any answer.
By contrast, quantitative questionnaires primarily include closed questions, predefined by the researcher either in the form of multiple choice answers or rating scales.
5. Overall layout of the questionnaire
After optimizing questions individually it should be checked for layout and overall flow of the questionnaire.
The following points need to be checked in the overall flow.
1. Are there comfortable transitions from one question to the next?
2. Are follow-up questions placed in the correct sequence?
3. Are skip rules implemented (if needed) so that participants can skip questions that do not apply to them?
6: Run a pilot
Here comes the crucial step of running a pilot for evaluation and optimization purposes. The questionnaire needs to be handed to a representative sample of your target audience before you go for the main trial.
1. During the pilot stage you can identify issues in readability, understanding, phrasing, and overall arrangement.
2. Important point to consider is to evaluate your pilot data statistically.
In this way, by following these 6 steps you can design your questionnaire.