Questionnaire methodology methods

Category: Education

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QUESTIONNAIRES What is a questionnaire? Advantages/Disadvantages of questionnaires Selecting Participants Steps in Designing Questionnaires Some tips and Suggestions Types of questions in questonnaires Providing Reliability Data Analysis- Summarising Findings A Sample Questionnaire

What is a questionnaire?:

What is a questionnaire? A questionnaire is a data collection instrument used to gather data on the characteristics and views of the participants about language teaching/learning.

Questionnaires provide three sorts of information:

Questionnaires provide three sorts of information Factual information (Characteristics) (e.g., age, gender, level, language background etc.) Behavioral information: (Behaviours) (e.g., frequency of using a dictionary or teaching by visuals? etc.) Attitudinal information: (Attitudes/Opinions/beliefs/Interests) (e.g., What is your purpose in learning English? etc.)

The advantages of questionnaires::

The advantages of questionnaires: Practical (time) Economical (cost)

The disadvantages of questionnaires::

The disadvantages of questionnaires: Unreliable information (Partcipants’ tendency to give expected responses) Limited information (Not detailed)

Steps in Designing Questionnaires:

Steps in Designing Questionnaires 1. The purpose of the questionnaire 2. Who it will be given to? (Participants)

Methods in selecting Participants:

Methods in selecting Participants Random Sampling Stratified Random Sampling Sample of Convenience

Random Sampling :

Random Sampling Everbody has an equal chance of being a participant. 1. Decide your probable population 2. Give a number to each individual in the population 3. Randomly select the numbers and decide your participants.

Stratified Random Sampling:

Stratified Random Sampling Preferred in heterogeneous groups in order to control some strata(salient characteristics) such as age, gender, level etc.) 1. Decide your probable population 2. Identify the salient characteristics of the population 3. Select members randomly from each strata 4. Examine the proportions of each characteristics

Sample of Convenience:

Sample of Convenience Using participants that you are able to get access to Make sure that it is in some way representative of the larger population

Designing Questionnaires:

Designing Questionnaires 1. Decide the list of topics you are planning to cover 2. Write individual queationnaire items.

Types of questions::

Types of questions: Open-ended:Participants write their own answers. + provide rich data, + easy to design - extremely difficult to code and analyse Close-ended (Closed) Participants choose one of several specified answers. + uniformity of responses, + easy to answer, code, analyse - narrower data, - difficult to prepare

Open-ended Questions::

Open-ended Questions: They take two forms: Fill-in: Usually in demographic questions E.g., Age: _____ Grade: ______ Short answer: Participants might give detalied information Describe the types of classroom activities that you find helpful.

Close-ended Questions-1::

Close-ended Questions-1: They take four forms: 1. Alternative Answer: E.g., Do you keep a vocabulary log? YES NO E.g., Years of studying English: 1-2 years 2-5 years 5 and more years

Close-ended Questions-2::

Close-ended Questions-2: 2. Likert-Scale: E. g. Circle the response that best describes your interest in the following reading materials. Very Somewhat Not Interesting Interesting Interesting Interesting _____________________________________________ Magazines 1 2 3 4 Novels 1 2 3 4 Comics 1 2 3 4 Web Pages 1 2 3 4

Close-ended Questions-2::

Close-ended Questions-2: The Controversy: Whether to include even(4, 6) or odd (3, 5) numbers The Danger in odd numbers is choosing the middle option (Neutral)

Close-ended Questions-3::

Close-ended Questions-3: 3. Checklist Format: Participants are asked to check all the answers that apply to their situation. E.g., Check all the kinds of materials you find interesting to read: - Magazines - Novels - Comics - Web Pages: - Others:

Close-ended Questions-4::

Close-ended Questions-4: 4. Ranking Answers : E.g., Rank which skill you feel most confident about from 1 (the best) to 4 (the worst): _ Reading _ Writing _ Speaking _ Listening Keep the number of ranked items limited (3 to 5) They are difficult to analyse

Tips in Wording Questions:

Tips in Wording Questions Avoid Negative Questions Spelling words correctly is not difficult for me. T F Avoid Double-barreled Questions (Asking two or more things in a question) * We should spend more time on reading and less time on speaking. AGREE DISAGREE

Tips in Wording Questions:

Tips in Wording Questions “Avoid Leading Questions (Items that encourage participants to respond in a certain way.) * Do you use the effective learning strategy of keeping a vocabulary log? YES NO

Tips in Wording Questions:

Tips in Wording Questions Avoid Embarrassing Questions (Social or cultural differences) * Salary * The literacy level of your parents

Tips in Wording Questions:

Tips in Wording Questions Avoid Biased Questions: (Favouring one race, gender, religion or nationality) * I like working in small groups with women because they are better language learners than men.

Ordering Questions:

Ordering Questions Three ways: Topic-based Type of Question Function

Final Survey Form:Layout 1:

Final Survey Form:Layout 1 Add a short statement describing the purpose of the research and who is conducting it. This research is conducted to find more about your interests and needs in learning English. Name

Final Survey Form:Layout 2:

Final Survey Form:Layout 2 Add a statement clarifying the instructions and make sure participants realise that the results will be kept confidential. There are no right or wrong answers. Please respond all the questions. The responses will be kept confidential and and used only for research purposes.

Final Survey Form:Layout 3:

Final Survey Form:Layout 3 Organise the questions. Give instructions for each part of the questions. Demographic questions are advised to put at the end. Do not forget to say “thank you” to the participants.

Additional Suggestions Dornyei. (2003):

Additional Suggestions Dornyei. (2003) The questionnaire should be no more than 4 pages. It should take no more than 30 minutes to complete. Decide the list of topics first- what to cover. Start with a brief introduction. Give clear instructions and exemplify where necessary.

Additional Suggestions Dornyei. (2003):

Additional Suggestions Dornyei. (2003) Start with particularly involving opening questions. Organise the questions well. Avoid questions with too lengthy responses MIf there are open-ended questions, put them at the end. Create an attractive, well-designed questionnaire format. Don’t forget to say thank you to the participants.


Piloting Giving the questionnaire to a group of people who are similar to the actual participants. Usually the 10 % (30-3)

Pilotting- Purpose:

Pilotting- Purpose To find out problems that exist in the clarity of the instructions and to diognase any items that might be confusing of difficult. Item Analysis Check for common responses- leading ??? Check omissions- confusing/difficult ???

For Reliability :

For Reliability Try giving twice- for consistency Prepare two forms and ask the participants to respond to the both forms. Put control items- to check internal consistency, put several questions that are the same things with different forms

Data Analysis- Close-Ended Questions:

Data Analysis- Close-Ended Questions A nominal Scale: For demographic information Male:1 Female: 2 An Ordinal or Ranked Scale: For ranked scale Interval Scales: For likert-type questions

Data Analysis- Forming Tables:

Data Analysis- Forming Tables Write the names of the participants to the left-hand column Use the rows in the tabel to note down the participants’ responses for each question When no response, leave a blank space

Data Analysis:

Data Analysis Frequencies- HOW MANY ? Percentages- To What Percent? (Page 124) Graphics- Bar/ Pie/ Chart For Likert-scale questions- decide the central tendency

Data Analysis- Open-ended Questions:

Data Analysis- Open-ended Questions Start by transcribing the answers Be careful about variables such as gender, age, proficiency etc. Try categorizing the data: Highlighting key ideas Reoccurring themes

Summarizing Findings:

Summarizing Findings Do not overgeneralise your findings Make conclusions specific to your population E.g., The students / teachers in this study appear to ………..

Explore the Ideas, 2.3 Page: 125:

Explore the Ideas, 2.3 Page: 125 Fukuda (2003) Purpose of the study: To get students’ opinions on the treatment of spoken errors in oral communicaion classes. Participants: 1000 Japanese High-school students Let’s evaluate the questionnaire in terms os sequencing of the items, the wording of questions, and the general layout.