A questionnaire question forms an integral part of the document, and is aimed at sourcing information about the issue or product on which the questionnaire is based. However, the questions of a questionnaire have a specific function and thus they must be very precise and clear. Any ambiguity in such questions can lead to erratic results and confused assessors. Some important aspects which have to be kept in mind while framing such questions are as follows:
- A questionnaire question can be open ended or close ended. In the first case, the assessor is invited to put forth his views on the topic of the questionnaire in writing and thus, it provides more liberty and space to the assessor to articulate his answer to the question.
- In the second case, the choices within which the answer to the question ranges are given to the assessor who then chooses from the options given to him. This allows for more accurate observations, while at the same time, it restricts the opinion of the assessor to the choices offered.
- A questionnaire question must be specific and relevant to the topic. They should be comprehensive enough to account for a broad range of respondent, or specific enough in case of a narrower range. Depending on the target audience, the nature and specificity of the questionnaire questions must vary.
- A questionnaire question also must be phrased correctly without any manipulation, so that it does not depict such a meaning that is not actually meant. There should be no ambiguity in the questions of the questionnaire.
Thus, the questions in a questionnaire are crucial to the success and relevance of the document. If framed correctly, they can elicit valuable opinions and comments from the respondent without coercing him into following a certain viewpoint.
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