Friday, March 28, 2008

Ins and Outs of Community Surveys or Library Surveys 101

Donna Fletcher
  • Why conduct?
  • Setting objectives.
  • Options.
  • Planning
  • Designing the survey
  • Survey Sampling principles
  • Good report

Why? Get the perspective of your community, more than just the library users. It is often different than those working there or even the Board! This is an 0pportunity to gain info on many topics including new services.

How are you going to act on the results? This will help determine what you ask. Fuzzy objectives lead to fuzzy research. Examples: gauge current satisfaction; determine desirable features in an expanded facility; understanding what the community is willing to spend.

Good research requires specific objectives.

Options include quantitative (surveys) and qualitative (focus groups, individual interviews).

Quantitative research counts “how many:” What are the results.

All legitimate surveys try to reach two goals: reliable, represent the population demographic of population sampled

Make the questionnaire as easy as possible,

Ask valid questions

A good report provides insight, conclusions and potential actions.

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