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Advantages and disadvantages of the Questionnaire

A questionnaire is a list of numerous questions that are given in hand or mailed to the respondent, who then writes their responses and mails them back to the researcher. In this method, a questionnaire is utilised for gathering primary data from a sizable area for some research.

Since the respondents are dispersed across a large region, it is quite challenging for the researcher to get in touch with each respondent directly and collect data using the interview technique since it requires more time, money, and effort to interview people who live far away. As a result, the questionnaire method provides crucial assistance in gathering primary information at such times. For this reason, a questionnaire is referred to and regarded as an effective alternative to an interview. Next, we'll learn about the definition, traits, categories, preparation method, benefits, and drawbacks of questionnaires.

Advantages and disadvantages of the Questionnaire

The questionnaire has the following characteristics:

  1. A questionnaire is a collection of questions that the researcher mails to the responder.
  2. The questionnaire's questions are typed, cyclostyled, or publicly available.
  3. Questionnaires are a main data collecting technique that rely on inadvertent interaction with informants to get information.
  4. It comprises straightforward questions that are generally few in number so that the informant doesn't have to spend a lot of time answering them.
  5. The investigator provides the informant with some guidance in the questionnaire to make it simpler for him to complete the questions.
  6. Only educated people are utilised to collect data via questionnaire.
  7. On a logical foundation, the majority of the questionnaire's questions are arranged in some parts in a systematic sequence.
  8. The questions are often standardised closed-ended questions. Although every effort is made to standardise the questions as much as possible, there may also be some open-ended questions.
  9. A spot is frequently left blank at the conclusion of the questionnaire so that the responder may provide any facts or opinions on his behalf.
  10. The questionnaire's questions were developed with the goal and characteristics of the study topic in mind.
  11. Questionnaires may be utilised widely and inexpensively.
  12. The questionnaire is typically accompanied by a letter in which the researcher asks the respondents to complete and return it.

These are the different sorts of questionnaires:

1. Mixed Questionnaire

A mixed questionnaire combines a variety of questions. Both closed and open-type surveys may be used to describe this one. In social surveys, a similar style of the questionnaire is utilised.

2. Graphics Questionnaire

In a visual questionnaire, images are used to show the questions' replies. The individual marks the area of the image where he knows the solution.

3. Closed Questionnaire

A limited or limitation questionnaire is another name for a closed questionnaire. Each question in this questionnaire has as many relevant answers as possible listed next to it. Through these inquiries, the informant completes his response. According to Sin Pao Young, "Closed surveys often include responses to the questions posed in ranked order.

4. Open-ended Survey

This survey is also known as an unlimited or unconstrained survey. A closed questionnaire is the reverse of this one. There are only questions and no place for replies in an open-ended questionnaire. The individual replying is not under any obligation. He is free to respond as he likes.

The following are some advantages of the questionnaire:

  1. Since questionnaires are mailed to informants, information may be gathered from a sizable group of them by mailing them all at once. As a result, questionnaires are helpful in the analysis of big samples.
  2. Information from residents of various places can be gathered using questionnaires.
  3. A wide range of geographical areas can use the questionnaire. The use of a timetable or other means does not provide access to this benefit.
  4. You can collect data from more individuals in less time by employing questionnaires.
  5. The use of questionnaires also results in lower expenditure. This helps to reduce the cost of the study's trip.
  6. Gathering impartial, trustworthy, and independent data - The questionnaire requires the respondent to fill out the questions on their own. In front of him, the pupil is not present. As a result, he can confidently fill out the questions' responses. He freely shares information since he is not frightened to divulge his name and is not influenced by the researcher's presence. This increases the likelihood of receiving fair, independent information that has been certified.
  7. Convenient for both surveyor and responder. The questionnaire approach is practical for both the researcher and the subject. By employing this technique, the researcher can avoid the "problem of touch" with the responder. He doesn't have to ask the respondent where they are or what time it is. There's no use in going around and around if it's not there. As a result, from the researcher's perspective, it is a simple procedure. Similarly, the informant finds it useful as well. The discomfort of hesitating in front of the investigator is spared the informant. He may freely complete the questions by taking as much time as he needs.
  8. Convenience of obtaining information frequently - Questionnaire methods are especially helpful in studies where respondents must regularly provide information for testing purposes or because to the subject's ever-changing nature. Instead than seeing the respondent repeatedly, answers can be acquired by mailing periodic questionnaires to the respondent. Repeated printing costs can be saved by having the questionnaires produced all at once. This makes it possible to repeatedly get information with minimal effort, expense, and time.
  9. Self-administered: The fact that a questionnaire is self-administered is by far its greatest benefit. It does not call for the hiring of field personnel or the formation of any research groups. This approach does not necessitate the researcher's presence in the region under investigation. This spares the researcher from organising the information gathering procedure.
  10. Statistical analysis is possible thanks to the questionnaire's questions' systematic and categorical organization, which makes it possible to conduct a statistical analysis of the responses gleaned from them.

The questionnaire has the following disadvantages :

  1. Useful only for educated respondents - The main flaw or restriction of the questionnaire is that it can only collect data from educated people. Uneducated or illiterate people cannot complete a thorough questionnaire.
  2. Incomplete or Ambiguous Information- The information gathered from the questionnaire is incomplete and vague, which is another significant downside. Due to time constraints, laziness, or any other cause, the responder fills out and sends the questionnaire. On purpose, respondents occasionally fail to respond to a lot of questions. Sometimes the inquiries are not understood by the respondents. He believes it would be better not to respond to him rather than attempt to comprehend him.
    Such inquiries are frequently posed because respondents wish to conceal certain information. In order to avoid obtaining incomplete or ambiguous information, researchers should bear the following in mind while developing their study questions: hesitation, laziness, a lack of time, a wish to conceal certain facts, etc.
  3. Questionnaire return issue- In addition to the danger of receiving confusing or partial responses, there is an issue with returning the surveys. It frequently occurs for respondents to withhold returning the completed survey. As soon as they get it, many people throw it in the trash. Although a questionnaire is crucial to the researcher from the perspective of his research, many individuals only see it as waste paper.
    Many individuals believe that sending responses is a waste of time. The major issue with the questionnaire approach is retrieval as a result of all these factors.Other than submitting several request letters, the researcher's only option for reselling the questionnaire is to do so. Many responders are annoyed by the researcher's request and return the questionnaire without filling it out.
  4. There is a dearth of comprehensive and extensive information. Through direct and in-person interaction, such as during an interview or through scheduling, comprehensive and specific information may be gained. The researcher is not there to encourage the respondent to provide thorough information; instead, everything in the questionnaire rests on the respondent's volition, including the type of replies he should provide.
    As a result, the respondent returns the survey with partially completed and ambiguous responses. In this approach, the questionnaire is unable to yield in-depth and thorough information.
  5. the possibility of incorrect information - In the questionnaire approach, the researcher is not present, so if a respondent has trouble comprehending a question, no one is available to clarify its purpose or meaning. As a result, in this circumstance, the reply will either not provide an answer at all or will provide an answer that is consistent with the question's intent. As a result, the anxiety of receiving inaccurate information also exists.
  6. Variation in replies is a problem. In addition to this, different respondents will provide various answers based on how they interpret the questions. As a result, there is so much range and diversity in the responses that it is challenging to make an accurate and scientific inference from them.
  7. The respondents' poor writing - Poor writing is another significant downside of the questionnaire approach. Sometimes it is challenging to grasp the responses given by respondents because of their confusing and poor writing.

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