14 Tips for Designing a Survey/Research Questionnaire

All researchers need a range of data for analysis. Questionnaires and surveys are essential tools for collecting this information. These tools can be used not only in a clinical trial to evaluate the effectiveness of medications, but also in statistical analysis to examine how people adapt to allergies. Such questionnaires and surveys can help you discover new information, open new windows to research, and come up with new solutions.

Principles of a Questionnaire

Case Report Form (CRF) is an example of a questionnaire used in many scientific studies. The CFR is an essential tool for clinical research and is used to maintain the validity and quality of the collected information.

Different types of questionnaires are used in scientific research. Some essential characteristics of a good survey that researchers need to know are:

1. Clear understanding of the focus of the research and the type of data needed to be collected.

2. Clear, solid, and integrated format

3. Brief and explicit instructions

4. Explicit language for questions

5. Definitions of terms

With these characteristics, one can be sure that a study is performed accurately and mistake-free.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Preparing questionnaires is very time-consuming and requires research. However, the amount of information generated and analyzed in this way can further develop your research ideas.


1. Cost-effectiveness: A well-designed questionnaire will save you both time and money. This is especially true for online questionnaires where the problem of printing and purchasing costs has been eliminated.

2. Easy to use: In all types of research, analysis and prediction become easier when you have a large amount of data. Tools like Survey Anyplace have a format that allows you to collect large amounts of data. Questionnaires are also flexible and you can manage them according to your needs.

3. Effectiveness for audiences of any size: Questionnaires allow you to collect information from an audience of any size. Your target could be a small group at a local event or a large group for scientific research that requires a wider range of participants.


1. Issues related to the subjects: Although the use of questionnaires has many positive points, some issues might arise because of the respondents and their answers:

Dishonesty: Subjects may not be completely honest in their answers. This can happen in an attempt to fit in with certain social roles or to protect their privacy.

Emotional Answers: Emotions can change a respondent’s interpretation of a question and possibly their answers.

Bias: If a person does not like the question or idea behind the questionnaire, they may deliberately change their answers to suit their biases.

2. Problem in interpretation: One of the problems can be the difference between the question you asked and the subject’s perception of it. This can lead to an irrelevant answer that is unrelated to the question or very theoretical.

3. Lack of personalization: Questionnaires are often non-personal. This lack of customization can cause many potential subjects to ignore the questionnaire or make little effort to provide answers.

What to Avoid When Preparing a Questionnaire

Fortunately, some websites offer step-by-step instructions for preparing an effective questionnaire. Despite these tutorials, you may still make mistakes in this regard. Here are three things you should avoid when preparing a questionnaire.

1. Length: If there are too many questions, it will cause the respondent to lose interest and not answer some questions.

2. Vague questions: Avoid general questions and questions that have to be answered at the end of the game.

3. Abuse: The questionnaire must be objective. All questions must be neutral to make sure that the respondents provide clear and objective answers.

Have you ever had the experience of preparing a questionnaire? Have you set up a questionnaire for a research project? Please share your ideas with us in the comments section.

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