Introduction to survey logic
Survey logic includes
- setting the response type (if you did not do so when creating the question) to specify whether respondents can enter a single choice, multiple choices, free text, dates etc.
- setting up routing to direct respondents through the questions in different ways according to how they asked previous questions
- setting up patterns to limit what responses they can provide for a question
- seeding the survey with data such as names and addresses for a mail merge or user names for an online survey
- setting up question and code rotation so that respondents are presented with questions in a random order
Not all of these options are available for all outputs, for example, you can’t perform question rotation on a paper questionnaire.
Before you publish your survey, you can choose how the questions will be presented to the respondents. You can:
- change the questions presented using question routing (skip logic) so that questions are asked or not asked depending upon respondent’s previous answers
- change the question text depending upon previous answers (this is known as dynamic text or piping)
- display calculations carried out on previous answers using in-survey calculations (derived variables)
- change which question codes are visible using masking
- reduce the effects of position bias by randomly rotating the order of codes and questions
- provide several versions of the same survey tailored to different topics
- force respondents to answer questions
- limit the possible responses by applying a valid range of answers
- apply patterns to make sure an answer is valid
- send an email when you receive a particular answer
You cannot change questions for each respondent for paper questionnaires, but you can check the answers using patterns when entering the data.
You can also provide a tailored questionnaire that people can complete a number of times on different subjects by using group questionnaires (or iterative surveys).