go to the School of Psychology home page Go to the UNE home page
Chapter 7 - Analysing the Data Part IV - Analysis of Variance Chapter 1 - Behavioural Science and research Chapter 2 - Research Design Chapter 3 - Collecting the Data Chapter 4 - Analysing the Data Part I - Descriptive Statistics Chapter 5 - Analysing the Data Part II - Inferential Statistics Chapter 6 - Analysing the Data Part III - Common Statistical Tests Sources of data Samples and populations Sampling methods Quantitative and qualitative approaches Questionnaire design Coding of data Readings and links

 

Chapter 3: Collecting the Data

 

Response rate

Another important consideration is response rate. If you give out 300 surveys and only get 50 back, you have a poor response rate (16.7%). You then have the major problem of how representative of the population of interest is your 50 returned questionnaires? Are the characteristics of the 50 who returned the survey somehow different to the 250 who did not return the survey?

You need to maximise response rate. There is a whole literature out there about enhancing response rate. But the most important principle is to maximise the rewards or benefits for the person responding while minimising the costs for the person. So, things like including stamped addressed envelopes for the return of the survey and making the survey short and interesting, with clear instructions need to be considered. Also, the survey should not look formidable, with small print, many arrows and boxes, and verbose instructions. Many researchers include small tokens or payments for completing the survey such as pencils or pens, tea bags, face washers, money (some of the ones I have received!).

 

 

 

© Copyright 2000 University of New England, Armidale, NSW, 2351. All rights reserved

UNE homepage Maintained by Dr Ian Price
Email: iprice@turing.une.edu.au