For this assignment, design a two-page survey questionnaire that would address your topic. This is quite short in order to limit the amount of work you put into this survey and because the most effective surveys are short ones. Use a word processor to write it up.
The goal of this assignment is to create a hypothetical 10-question survey to be self-administered to a relevant sample of people on a particular research question you may have in mind. No one will ever take this survey, but you should write it as if they would, so that you can demonstrate your mastery of the skills of good survey question writing. (See Assigned Reading “SPSS Survey Tips” for more information).
If you are not sure what topic you want to write your survey on, two suggestion paths: (1) If you want to set yourself up well for the second part of this course (SOC 322), you might want to think about writing a survey about a topic you’d like to pursue in that future class for your own independent research project. However, keep in mind that it will be a qualitative project so the closed-ended answer choice survey you write here cannot be used for that project. But the questions could perhaps be edited later into appropriate qualitative tools. (2) If you have been pursuing a hypothesis in this class and you were disappointed with the way the GSS asks these questions, and you think you could design a better survey on the same topic, but get more precise/valid responses with better wording, you could pursue that angle as well. However, it is perfectly fine to write a survey right now that (a) has nothing to do with what you’ve been doing in the GSS, and (b) has nothing to do with what you will ultimately research in 322. You are not bound by this assignment. It is a purely hypothetical tool to assess the skills at hand.
Answer choices provided are (a) exhaustive (covered all possible bases) and (b) mutually exclusive (make sure they do not overlap or create situation where respondent would have difficulty choosing between 2 or more options). Don’t overuse “don’t know/other”—choices constructed to maximize/optimize usable/valid data.
/ 5Question Wording
Questions are worded in such a way that is clear, easy to understand, not double-barreled, not loaded (constructed to maximize/optimize usable/valid data)
Directions are clear (circle one, check one, etc.) and questions are set off from answer choices in such a way that is visually clear, not distracting
/ 5Coherence/ Order
Theme/purpose of survey is evident, not scattered/disjointed, don’t dive right into deep questions, good flow
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