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The quest to know more and solve man’s problems has lead to the invention of questionnaires. Nowadays, research work are usually backed up with the yes of questionnaires. The use of questionnaires has spread from the educational sector (Colleges of Education, Polytechnics, Universities) to the business sector (industries, companies, banks,service providers, etc).
According to BT Bassavanthappa, a questionnaire is a paper and pencil instrument that a research subject is asked to complete. It is designed to gather individual data about knowledge, beliefs, attitudes and feelings.
Simply put, a questionnaire is an arranged and organized question given to people to answer questions.
It aims at giving information for a particular question. These questions are prepared by a person called a researcher. The people that answer the questions are called respondents. A good questionnaire must be have its objectives. It must be written in simple language and affirmative sentences. It must have adequate answer options. These qualities will help the respondent answer the questions properly.
Examples of Questionnaires
There are two examples of questionnaires known as the close questionnaire and open ended questionnaires.
Closed Questions: In this questionnaire, the respondent are so open to various options as answers. This questionnaire is very useful to researchers that work on preliminary analysis.
As fixed answers are provided, it make it easy for calculations, statistics and percentage to be given. Closed ended questionnaires make it possible for information to be gathered about a certain topic.
There are seven closed questions: Importance questions, Dichotomous question, Rate Scale question, Leading questions, Likert question and Buying Propensity question.
Importance questions : As the name implies are questions asked to rate the importance of something.
Dichotomous question: These are questions that require Yes or No for an answer. Example of such question is: Do you have a bank account? (a) Yes (b) No.
Rating Scale question: These questions are used to rate a particular matter. Example: How would you rate our services today? (a) Good (b) Fair (c) Poor (d) Very Poor. This questions are usually seen in banks. Nowadays, if you make a video or voice call on WhatsApp or Facebook, you will get a rating scale question like: Please rate the quality of your WhatsApp call (a) Very bad (b)Bad (c) Okay (d) Good (e) Excellent.
Likert question: These are questions that rate the usage or patronage of something. Customers feelings about a particular matter can be ascertained using this question format. Example: How often do you visit the hospital? (a) Never (b) Rarely (c) Sometimes (d) Often (e) Always
Buying Propensity Questions: These questions are peculiar to businesses that requires their customers opinion on how to service them better. They are aimed at assessing patronizers intention and buying propensity towards a particular good or service.
It helps broadens the knowledge of the customers need. Example of such question is: If the wrist watch comes with a radio, would you think of buying it? (a) Definitely (b) Probably (c)Probably not (d) Not sure (e) Definitely not.
Leading Questions: Leading questions gives the respondent the freedom to express themselves. But the respondent is forced to a short and specific kind of answer using short words. Example of such question is: What is the most painful effect of sexual abuse?
As the name implies, there are no restrictions. The respondent has the liberty of expressing his or her own opinion in his or her own words. These questions are not based on predetermined responses. The appropriate response and suggestions are easily gotten from the respondent.
These form of questionnaires is very useful in research that is objective. Compilation and classification of responses are usually difficult. This is because different individuals have different ways of expressing their opinions.
Examples of open ended questions are: Who are Traditional Birth Attendant?
It is pertinent to note that there are two other types of questionnaires although they are rarely used in practice. The mixed questionnaire and the pictorial questionnaire. Mixed questionnaire is a combination of closed and open question format.
For instance, As part of your tourism experience, have you visited any this tourist centres in Nigeria? If none, select none of the above. (a) Obudu Cattle Ranch (b) Yankai Game Reserve (c) Crocodile River (c) Other (please specify) (d) None of the above. Pictorial questionnaire uses pictures to capture the attention of the respondent.