The Process

There are several steps of survey development and analysis, and Survey by Design can assist you with any or all of these steps:

Determining the question

The first step in any research study is to determine what you would like to study or find out. This may be straightforward or more complex, depending on the topic you are studying. We can help you determine what you would like to know and come up with an operational definition. This is a crucial step as the questions you ask in any survey will depend on how well you have framed the question initially.

Developing a survey or other research instrument

Once you have determined the question, the next step would be to write the questions you will be asking your participants. There are many different types of questions, including closed-ended, where respondents choose one answer from a list of choices, or more open-ended, where respondents can write their own response. Writing questions in a way that makes the data easier to analyze later is very important. Other methods besides surveys are also available, such as interviews and focus groups. We can help you determine which method(s) would be most beneficial to your project.

Choosing a sample

The next step in your study would be choosing the sample of participants you would like to survey. Depending on what contact information is available, this could be done via e-mail, mail, phone, etc. We will help you determine a sample size and method of contact that works best for your needs.

Administering the survey and collecting data

Once the survey has been developed and a sample chosen, the survey would be sent to participants. Again, this would depend on what type of contact information is available. Web surveys can be administered using SurveyMonkey or other similar sites. Paper surveys would be mailed to participants with postage-paid envelopes included for returning surveys.

Data analysis

After collecting the data, analysis using statistical software such as SPSS would be conducted. If there are qualitative or open-ended questions, comments would be analyzed as well.

Writing a report

The final step would be writing a full research report. Detailed charts and graphs, tailored to the needs and goals of the individual project, would be included.

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