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Online surveys – the convenience is remarkable! Unfortunately, over surveying has resulted from the ease of online surveys, creating survey fatigue, causing response rates to plummet. To help assist with this phenomenon, the Office of Institutional Research has developed the Survey Assistance website. Besides some survey guidelines and best practices for survey administration, this site also contains a Survey Calendar. By better planning and coordination, we hope to eliminate duplication of effort or redundancy leading to more efficient and effective survey administrations.
Some Preliminary questions you might ask:
I. Survey Calendar
The Survey Calendar allows campus constituents to more strategically plan for upcoming surveys. The calendar provides information on what surveys have been done in the past few months and what is scheduled to take place in the near future.
We need your help! To add your survey to the calendar, please click here .
In an effort to further our knowledge about best practices, we are interested in your survey processes. Once your survey administration is complete, we ask that you let us know your (1) final response rate and (2) what communication or recruitment strategies worked well versus what might not have worked so well (e.g. paper reminder vs. email, intriguing subject line). This information may be documented and shared in the below Tips On Survey Administration.
II. Survey Design Guidelines
1. Define the topic. What are your questions that you want answers to? What are the goals of your survey? Have these been addressed in another survey? Check the OIR survey site or review the Inventory of Survey Questions.
2. Identify your sample. Use techniques from best practices (e.g. online sample size calculator). The IR Office is available for assistance with suggestions on identifying sample sizes.
3. Develop survey questions, cover letters, reminders, timelines, etc., following best practices. The IR Office is available for assistance with survey/question design. Consult with the IR office to ensure that your survey does not conflict with university-sponsored surveys. By coordinating efforts we can ensure that respondents do not receive an unreasonable number of surveys throughout a given semester.
4. Obtain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval if necessary or check with the Institutional Review Board Coordinator at 7-4279.
5. Test your survey by using a sample of your actual respondents. Ask for their feedback – e.g. confusing questions or terminology, length of time completing survey, formatting. Modify survey as needed.
6. Administer your survey. If applicable, track respondents so to not send out unnecessary survey reminders.
7. Analyze and report results. Be cautious as to not report results in such a manner that individual respondents can be identified. Share the results with the appropriate constituents.
8. Make decisions and encourage change based on your results.