Structure of Self Reports
A researcher uses a pre-set list of questions which have fixed responses.
Semi structured -
A researchers uses a pre-set list of questions with no fixed responses so participants can express their views in their own words.
Unstructured/Open ended -
No pre-set questions, no fixed responses.
Type of Questions
Open ended -Invite people to express their views in their own words.
+ People can give their opinion so we learn why behavour occurs not just that it does, gives us detailed qualitative data.
- Requires interpretation due the endless list of possible answers which makes it hard to score objectivley, to categorize and therefore analyse.
Closed -These force people to choose from a list of possible answers. eg. yes/no, tick boxes or options such as "agree/dont know/disagree".
+ Easy to categorize and therefore analyse due to it being quantitative data, it also gives factual reliable results.
- We dont learn why a behaviour occurs not just that it does, and people will be more inclined to answer in a more socially desirable way. People are also forced to give a specific answer which reduces validity if people dont want to choose that option but are forced to.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Questionnaire Meth
+ Allows researchers to find out things that cannot easily be discovered by experimentation or observation due to it being unethical or impossible.
+ Structured questionnaires are very easy to score objectively and analyse.
+ Unstructured questionnaires provide detailed understanding of peoples views on particular issues.
- We cant establish cause and effect as numerous factors may effect peoples responses.
- Social desirability may effect responses as what they say they do and what they actually do are different.
- Structured questionnaires dont offer people an opportunity to express their thoughts.
- Unstructured questionnaires rely on interpretation and are difficult to score objectively.