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					Developing Surveys

        John C. Ory
      Chris Migotsky
Center for Teaching Excellence
         249 Armory
        Know your….

         Survey Examples

Annual Campus Senior Survey

Proposed General Education Survey
      From 40 Suggestions …..
About questions
• “Is this question worth asking?”
• Keep items short as possible
• Avoid double-barreled wording
  Rate the quality and value of the capstone
• Focus response choices
  “Rate the quality of …” Use P-F-G-VG-EX
                  rather than
  “The capstone was excellent.” SD-D-A-SA
• Balance your scales
  m        m       m       m         m
 Poor     Fair    Good     VG     Excellent

• Decide on number of scale points
            4 or 5 or 6?
• Should you use “Neutral category” or “Don’t
• Place positive responses to right
     Poor=1, Fair=2, etc…
About survey
• Make the questionnaire “eye-appealing”
     professional with plenty of white space
• Group items into logically coherent sections

• Avoid putting important items at the end

• Do you need demographics?
               GETTING RESPONSES

Phase I: Getting their attention
• If your survey arrives in style, it may not get
  tossed in trash
• If your survey appears seductive, the respondent
  may be attracted
• If your survey appeals to a basic value,, it may get
• If your survey arrives at the right time, it has a
  chance of being completed
Phase II: Keeping their attention
• If the students know what it is for and why it is
  important, they may want to respond
• If you give them something for their effort, they
  may expend the effort to respond
• If it is easy to complete, it might get completed
• If you ask questions that “grab” students, you
  might get responses
Phase III: Getting their feedback
• If you keep it confidential, they may feel
  “safe” to respond
• If you make it easy to return, you might get
  it back
• If you follow-up, you even can get a better
  return rate
                E-mails and Cover Letters

•   Date letter or e-mail of the day it actually goes out
•   Use letterhead when possible
•   Personalize salutation
•   Explain purpose
•   Describe who is sponsoring
•   Provide name and phone for further info
•   Consider sending advance e-mail or letter
•   Consider other methods to publicize survey
• Explain how respondents were chosen
• Explain how and when to return survey
• Describe incentives
• Provide a realistic time required to complete
• Explain how the confidentiality of the respondent
  and data will be protected
• Identify deadline for returning
               How to get 75% Return
4 mailings 2 weeks apart      = 40+20+10+5

Send complete package on 1st and 3rd mailings
(cover letter, questionnaire, envelope with stamp)
Send reminder cards on 2nd and 4th mailings

E-mails or Cover letters are different:
1st   thorough content
2nd   gentle and friendly reminder
3rd   emphasize confidentiality and stress importance
4th   set a final deadline
 A handy campus tool for developing
         electronic surveys -

Public Affairs’ Web Services Toolbox

    Presented by Chris Migotsky
   Web Surveys in the Toolbox

Main Toolbox Page
       Let’s Create a Survey!
Web Services Toolbox

Other web survey tools
  – Survey Monkey
  – Snap Surveys
  – Zoomerang

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