Complex and inappropriate answer scales

Scales from 1 to 5 are used to ask about how much a respondent, for example, knows, agrees with, likes, understands, supports or prefers XXX. This requires the use of numerous and complex scales. An elegant solution with minimal theoretical weaknesses is changing the questions into questions for measuring agreement only. For example, instead of asking "how well do you know … (I don't know it at all … I know it very well)" and "how much do you like … (I don't like it at all … I like it very much)", we can simply use a unified question and scale "how much do you agree with the following statements? I like … I know … I don't agree at all (1) – I completely agree (5)". When a question has an OBJECTIVE alternative, e.g. "How often do you visit webpage XXX?", one should always choose an OBJECTIVE scale (e.g. daily, weekly) instead of a SUBJECTIVE scale (e.g. often, less often), because people have very different conceptions about "often".

<< Back to Basic Recommendations