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ERIC Number: EJ936373
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: N/A
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1528-5324
Using Research-Based Practices to Increase Response Rates of Web-Based Surveys
Perkins, Ross A.
EDUCAUSE Quarterly, v34 n2 2011
Capturing the data that help define faculty, administrative, and student needs is but one of the many critical functions of IT professionals. Any number of means can be employed to gather the data, including physical equipment inventory, software metrics, community forums, and surveys. However, the survey, particularly the web-based survey, presents something of a problem for many public universities and colleges. While they are relatively easy to make and distribute, survey response is typically weak. Research actually shows a decline in response rates for surveys of all kinds over the past dozens of years. The paucity of feedback from such low response rates seems to encourage "guess-based decision making" more than data-driven decision making. So, even before an IT office can go about determining needs, it faces the problem of trying to elicit responses in a manner that is not as enthusiastically received as many would hope. This article provides advice about survey administration based on findings from the literature as applied to an empirical survey study conducted at Boise State University. The results of the survey gave university IT officials important data about student use and perceptions of campus IT resources, particularly its campus-based computer labs and other support mechanisms. More importantly, the evidence seems to illustrate that adherence to research-based "best practices" can increase response rate for web-based surveys. (Contains 4 figures, 1 table and 23 endnotes.)
EDUCAUSE. 4772 Walnut Street Suite 206, Boulder, CO 80301-2538. Tel: 303-449-4430; Fax: 303-440-0461; e-mail: info@educause.edu; Web site: http://www.educause.edu
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Idaho