Question 5 on p. 270 of Business Research Methods.
November 17, 2009
In the following situations, decide whether you would use a personal interview, telephone survey, or self-administered questionnaire. Give your reasons.
a A survey of the residents of a new subdivision on why they happened to select that area in which to live. You also wish to secure some information about what they like and do not like about life in the subdivision. For this group we can use a focus group which is used as a preliminary research technique to explore peoples ideas and attitudes. It is often used to test new approaches (such as products or advertising), and to discover customer concerns. A group of 6 to 20 people meet in a conference-room-like setting with a trained moderator. The room usually contains a one-way mirror for viewing, including audio and video capabilities. The moderator leads the group's discussion and keeps the focus on the areas you want to explore. Focus groups can be conducted within a couple of weeks and cost between two and three thousand dollars. Their disadvantage is that the sample is small and may not be representative of the population in general. For this survey I would recommend a self-administered survey since the people are in a central location that can be studied via paper or computerized instrument without interviewer assistance. For this group we can have comment cards such as the ones restaurants and hotels give. This survey gives fast access to the computer literate, allows for rapid data collection and allows for visuals to be used. Incentives may be used to increase response rates. The disadvantage is that there is a need for low-distraction environment for survey completion.
b. A poll of students at Metro University on their preferences among three candidates who are running for president of the student...