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In: Business and Management

Submitted By ameipam
Words 6144
Pages 25
Naresh K. Malhotra, Georgia Institute of Technology

This chapter describes the importance of a questionnaire and presents the process for developing questionnaires and observational forms. Guidelines for questionnaire construction are provided at each stage of the process. In addition, commonly used scaling techniques and use of questionnaires in experimentation are discussed and the design of observational forms is presented.1

What Is a Questionnaire?
A questionnaire is a formalized set of questions for obtaining information from respondents. The overriding objective is to translate the researcher’s information needs into a set of specific questions that respondents are willing and able to answer. While this may seem straightforward, questions may yield very different and unanticipated responses. For example, how would you answer the following question: "Which State is larger, California or Texas?" Would you answer based on population or area?

Why Is a Questionnaire Important?
A questionnaire is the main means of collecting quantitative primary data. A questionnaire enables quantitative data to be collected in a standardized way so that the data are internally consistent and coherent for analysis. Imagine how difficult it would be to analyze the data of a national survey conducted by 40 different interviewers if the questions had not been asked in a standard way, that is, if the interviewers had asked different questions using different


wording and order. A questionnaire ensures standardization and comparability of the data across interviewers, increases speed and accuracy of recording, and facilitates data processing.

Questionnaire Design Process
No scientific principles guarantee an optimal or ideal questionnaire. Questionnaire design is as much an art as it is a...

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