We use questionnaires based surveys for requirements collection, feed back collection, satisfaction surveys, competitors analysis. The list is incomplete as imagination and creativity is the limit for the application of questionnaire based surveys. In training projects we use questionnaires to assess the knowledge transfer effectiveness of the training programs.
The following sections are taken from Wikipedia
A questionnaire is a research instrument consisting of a series of questions (or other types of prompts) for the purpose of gathering information from respondents. The questionnaire was invented by the Statistical Society of London in 1838.
Although questionnaires are often designed for statistical analysis of the responses, this is not always the case.
Questionnaires have advantages over some other types of surveys in that they are cheap, do not require as much effort from the questioner as verbal or telephone surveys, and often have standardized answers that make it simple to compile data. However, such standardized answers may frustrate users as the possible answers may not accurately represent their desired responses.
Basic guidelines for framing questions
- Use statements which are interpreted in the same way by members of different sub-populations of the population of interest.
- Use statements where persons that have different opinions or traits will give different answers.
- Think of having an “open” answer category after a list of possible answers.
- Use only one aspect of the construct you are interested in per item.
- Use positive statements and avoid negatives or double negatives.
- Do not make assumptions about the respondent.
- Use clear and comprehensible wording, easily understandable for all educational levels
- Use correct spelling, grammar and punctuation.
- Avoid items that contain more than one question per item (e.g. Do you like strawberries and potatoes?).
- Question should not be biased or even leading the participant towards an answer.
Reference – Wikipedia