Notice: the WebSM website has not been updated since the beginning of 2018.

Web Survey Bibliography

Title An Experiment with Respondent Burden in a Pop-Up Web Survey
Author David, P., Horner, L. R., Diedrichs, C., Rogers, S. M., Connell, T.
Year 2003
Access date 06.05.2004
Abstract As respondent burden increases, survey participation may decrease. What constitutes an increased respondent burden may depend on the context of the request for participation. In this paper we report on an experiment using different length questionnaires to manipulate respondent burden as part of a study of electronic journal usage at a major university. Respondents were randomly sampled as they downloaded electronic journal articles, thus interupting their activity. Although the questionnaires were brief and simple to answer, there was a concern that even small variations in the questionnaire length could decrease participation.
Randomly selected electronic journal users saw one of six questionnaires “pop-up” in their web browser. Users could decline to participate in the survey by pressing a close button in the pop-up window. Each version of the questionnaire asked for some basic demographic information such as university status (faculty, staff or student) that would augment standard usage statistics. One version asked all five demographic questions, while each of the other versions asked only three questions. The five short versions had one question in common and plus two of other four questions. Although this technique would result in much “missing” data for the short questionnaires, we expected to collect enough data in the regular study to overcome the deficit.
The pilot study ran for several weeks during the summer term. There were somewhat different response rates for each of the six questionnaires. Although the long version of the questionnaire had the lowest participation rate, the differences were small. Using the long questionnaire slightly increased individual respondent burden and decreased participation, but it would also allow for less frequent sampling and thus reduce respondent burden across the population.
Access/Direct link Homepage - conference (abstract)
Year of publication2003
Bibliographic typeConferences, workshops, tutorials, presentations
Print