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Writing Survey Questions – Best Practices

Writing Survey Questions - Best Practices

You’re going to write a short survey and have it reviewed by your peers! The topic can be anything meaningful to you, but you should try and write questions you would actually use in your work. Questions will be evaluated on all of the guidelines we’ve reviewed in the modules on writing questions.

Your survey should have the following elements:

A clear statement of the research topic. This is the concept or concepts you are trying to measure in your survey. A brief (2-3 sentence) description of the survey, with the potential survey respondent as the audience. At least 10 survey questions. You should at least one of each of the following, but you can select your response format and more uncommon survey question types as well. a. Open-ended b. Nominal closed-ended c. Ordinal closed-ended

You can use any platform you have access to. You should upload your questions directly to the platform, or share a link to an online survey you’ve created.

Before you complete the peer assessment, please read through the “best practices” for writing survey questions below.

Open-ended Question Best Practices

Specify the response desired in the question stem Provide extra motivation to respond Use non-biasing probes Closed-ended Question Best Practices

Include comparison points in the question stem Have a complete set of answers available Create mutually exclusive answers Think about the answer response format carefully Nominal Closed-ended Question Best Practices

More options for selecting or ranking can be confusing Avoid unequal response options Randomize response orders where primacy, recency, or anchoring are in play You get more response by forcing a selection Ordinal Closed-ended Question Best Practices

Choose between unipolar and bipolar scales Choose an appropriate scale length Choose direct labels Choose specific metrics rather than vague quantifiers Provide a balanced scale Label all response categories Provide scales that approximate your population values. Click the item below to download a PDF file containing the best practices:

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UX Research at Scale: Surveys, Analytics, Online Testing

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