Sociology research project

You will design a questionnaire that might be used to examine people’s voting preferences in the upcoming presidential election. Your questionnaire should obtain the following from each respondent:

Their demographic characteristics and socio-economic status

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If they plan to vote in the 2020 presidential election and who they would like to vote for (include Trump and current Democratic candidates for nomination) (a 2-part contingency question)

The issues that are most likely to affect their vote choice in the form of a matrix question, using Likert-type responses to five statements.

This project should be 3-4 pages long. The first page should be the questionnaire laid out in the format you would use if you were actually conducting the survey. Make sure that the format will be easy to read and will not be difficult for respondents to answer. Be sure to provide appropriate spaces for respondents to check or write-in their answers.

Question wording should be simple and straightforward: avoid double-barreled questions, loaded terms, and negations. Justify your choice of open or closed-ended question. For closed-ended questions, response categories should be exhaustive and mutually exclusive. Matrix questions using Likert-type responses should have a consistent scale.

In the following 2-3 pages, discuss these issues:

Which measures operationalize “demographic characteristics”? Which operationalize socio-economic status?
What concepts were you operationalizing with your questions in the issue matrix?
Identify the level of measurement for each item and the rationale for using a close-end or open-ended question

You have obviously given considerable thought and care to the wording of your questions in order to avoid the common problems noted above and discussed in lecture/readings. Now, gives us 2-3 examples of alternative wording that would be problematic and tell us why.

Explain why you asked the questions in this order. Did this ordering allow you to avoid some sort of bias? Help increase engagement?

Put it all together for us. State one hypothesis that you could test by analyzing the data the you collect with this instrument. Refer to specific variables and the concepts that they are designed to capture.

• In regards to the ISSUES included in your matrix, likert-type illustration try to be SPECIFIC and not broad. Example: Don’t mention criminal justice as an issue, but rather narrow this for the purpose of clear understanding. Rather an issue should be something more along the lines of felon voting rights, death penalty, change in sentencing laws, ect… In summary, don’t be broad like saying the economy, immigration, but hone-in on an issue. You want to avoid interpretive confusion in surveys
• There are 4-5 demographic and socio-economic status questions that are very common in surveys that you should strive to cover (look at lecture slides/readings). Also watch-out for common framing errors regarding these. When scaling these question, be reasonable in your measurements. (you’ll also need to explain later) For example regarding income: you don’t want to start with the following options 10K-40K, 40k-60k and so on. There are people that have zero income, so there should be an interval option for this (also make sure your scales are even). Another problem with this example is that the scale breath doesn’t makes little sense, it’s too wide (30k difference doesn’t make sense), it should be shorten. Also, do we mean annual/yearly, monthly, weekly income?
• Out all of these, (double-barreled questions, loaded terms, and negations), loaded terms tends to be an error
• Returning to the matrix/liqert illustration, when creating this, pay particular attention to the project prompt. The prompt (just below) provides a clue here as to how to properly word this part of your project
o Here is the snippet of the prompt for this: “The issues that are most likely to affect their vote choice in the form of a matrix question, using Likert-type responses to five statements”
• In terms of order, you have to determine whether demographic/ socio-economic questions go ahead or before matrix/issue questions? There is a preferred approach by researchers, which you should have learned in lecture/readings
• Hypothesis: have an IV (choose one out of many) and DV. & provide and provide explanation

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