Build Customizing Survey Pathways San Diego State

Build Customizing Survey Pathways San Diego State

Build Customizing Survey Pathways San Diego State

Lab 7: Qualtrics Survey & Writing Survey Questions—APA Paper #2


Objectives for Lab 7:

  • Learn Qualtrics survey software
  • Write good survey items with good response formats
    • Follow survey writing dos and don’ts
    • Differentiate between opinion questions and demographic questions


Learning Qualtrics: (15 points)

Qualtrics is an online survey research suite. It allows you to build surveys and collect data online. Survey research is moving more and more into the online realm, so learning how to navigate an online survey research program (like Qualtrics or Survey Monkey) is an invaluable tool to research labs, graduate programs, and future employers.

Qualtrics has a lot of information on their site:

First you will watch five brief videos about the basics of Qualtrics, and then you will use those skills to build a sample survey.

    • Pay attention to these tutorials, as you will be constructing a practice survey on Qualtrics.
  • Build your own survey.
    • For this you need to sign onto your own Qualtrics account:
    • The instructions for this activity are below (Qualtrics Practice Survey). Feel free to print out the rest of this page so that you do not need to move back and forth between screens.
    • When you are done building this sample survey, please email the link to your TA.
      • The subject line should read: PSY 301 Practice Survey Link-(Last Name)
      • Copy and paste the link in the body of the email and email the link to your TA!

***Qualtrics Practice Survey***

You recently started an ice cream shop and are interested in collecting feedback from your customers.

  • Create a new project from scratch.
  • Build a new descriptive text question that welcomes your respondents to your survey. Using the Rich Content Editor, insert an image of your ice cream shop in the text of this question.
  • Insert a manual page break after your welcome question.
  • Build a new multiple choice question (after the page break) asking your respondents if they recently visited your ice cream shop.
  • Build a new multiple-choice question asking your respondents for their gender.
  • In a new block, build a new matrix table question asking how satisfied your respondents were with various aspects of your ice cream shop (taste, flavor options, atmosphere, staff).
  • Build a new text entry question asking why your respondents were dissatisfied with their visit to your ice cream shop.
  • Use the Look & Feel to apply a survey theme that you like.
  • Use the Look & Feel to change the question text across your entire survey to Georgia font.

Let’s customize the pathways respondents will take through our survey.

  1. Use skip logic to skip those that have not recently visited your ice cream shop to the end of the block.
  2. Use a branch in your survey flow (placed in between your first and second blocks) that sends respondents to the end of the survey if they have not recently visited your shop. Set up a custom end of survey message that will display to these respondents as they end your survey.
  3. Use display logic to specify that your text entry question (why were you dissatisfied?) only appears to those who indicated that they were dissatisfied in your matrix table question (how satisfied were you with…?)
  4. Preview your survey to ensure that your logic is working as expected. Make any changes needed to achieve the desired behavior.

Let’s collaborate and distribute our survey.

  1. Share your survey with your TA (select share project and find your TA’s name)
  2. Get a single reusable link to distribute your survey to your TA.

Writing Good Survey Questions:

What is your survey topic? LIFE SATISFACTION

This is your outcome or dependent variable (DV). This is what our survey project and your paper will be about, and this is the variable we will be trying to explain in our survey research project. There is an existing, well-validated scale measuring our DV-we will refer to this as the “existing DV scale” in the upcoming labs.

DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES: variables that are “true” about a person

(e.g., age, gender, ethnic background, political affiliation, number of hours slept last night, height, etc.)

What are some demographic variables that you think might be related to (specifically, predict) your survey topic?

E.g., age: As age increases, SURVEY TOPIC increases/decreases…

E.g., gender: Women will report more/less SURVEY TOPIC compared to men…

Practice writing demographic survey questions (with response scales):

1. What is your age?

_____ (leave a blank space for a participant to write/type in number)

2. What is your gender?

_____ Male ____ Female ____ Non-binary ___ Transgender ____ Other, not listed

Write FOUR demographic survey questions





OPINION VARIABLES: variables that a person has an opinion about (but not necessarily a right/wrong answer)

(e.g., life satisfaction, self-esteem, attitudes about pets, etc.)

What are some opinion variables that you think might be related to your survey topic?

E.g., attitudes about job: As positive attitudes about your job increases, SURVEY TOPIC increases…

E.g., stress: As stress increases, SURVEY TOPIC decreases…

Practice writing opinion survey questions:

(note they are not always written as a question)

1. I am satisfied in my current job. 1-7 scale (1 = strongly disagree, 7 = strongly agree)

2. How often do you feel overwhelmed because you do not have the time to do the things you need to do? 1 = never, 2 = sometimes, 3 = often, 4 = always

Write FOUR opinion survey questions






  • Type out your FOUR demographic survey questions and your FOUR opinion survey questions
    • Refer to your book on dos and don’ts of question writing, pp. 86-96; look at the Qualtrics website for Best Practices
    • Decide on the appropriate response formats. Most of the opinion survey questions should be continuous variables (e.g., never – always, strongly disagree – strongly agree), probably on 5- or 7- or 9-point scales.
    • Make sure that your items and your responses go together!
      • (e.g., do not ask a “how often…” question and give “strongly disagree – strongly agree” as responses)
    • NOTE: you do not have to format this like a professional survey (don’t spend the time on that). Instead, type the item and type the response options (or if open-ended, describe that like we did with “age” above)
  • Submit them electronically with your name on them.