ISR Awards

EQ Design Workshop

The objective of the workshop is to provide employees involved in electronic questionnaire (EQ) design the opportunity to learn about the latest developments in this field. As well, current Statistics Canada EQ designs will be discussed and reviewed with the goal to potentially improve them. This workshop will serve to expand the knowledge of Statistics Canada employees about EQ design and contribute to the development of better EQ design solutions for Statistics Canada.


Many Statistics Canada surveys will be using electronic questionnaire as a primary mode of collection. The design of efficient electronic questionnaire will contribute to support this Statistics Canada initiative. Electronic questionnaire solutions are rapidly evolving as more and more organisations use this mode of collection. It is important to keep abreast of the latest developments that will lead to efficiencies. We are proposing to invite Mick Couper, a leader in the field of electronic questionnaire design, to give a 2 day workshop on questionnaire design to the Questionnaire Design Resource Centre (QDRC) employees. Other employees from Statistics Canada, which are also involved in questionnaire design, will be invited to attend. Around 20 employees should participate in the 2 day workshop. Mick Couper has produced numerous communications (papers, monographs, books) related to the topic of electronic questionnaire design (see his Curriculum Vitae for more details).
The 2 day workshop will start with a half a day course given by Mick Couper. For the reminder of the workshop, discussions will take place on various topics. The agenda for the workshop was jointly proposed by Mick Couper and Statistics Canada. The agenda is presented below. Note that this agenda may be modified as needed.

Day 1: morning
A 3-hour workshop or short course on the Design of Web Surveys given by Mick Couper. It focuses mainly on household surveys, and covers the following topics:
1) Scrolling vs. paging designs
2) Basic widgets for constructing Web surveys (radio buttons, check boxes, drop boxes, text fields, etc.):
which one to us and how to design them
3) Extended design features: using JavaScript of flash to extend question types to running tallies, visual
analog scales, use of images, etc.
4) General layout and design: typography, background/foreground color, layout and alignment, grid/matrix
questions, etc.
5) Putting the instrument together: respondent assistance, navigation and movement through the
instrument, progress indicators, dealing with missing data, and error messages

Day 1: afternoon and Day 2: morning and afternoon
A series of focused sessions targeted to particular topics of interest to STATCAN, each lasting up to 1 hour. The proposed format is as follows:
1) Brief introduction by STATCAN staff on the issue and key questions
2) Brief overview by Mick Couper of what is known and not known about the topic (i.e., review research evidence and best practices)
3) Open discussion of alternatives, and review of STATCAN examples (screen shots)
4) Summary on key recommendations or decisions