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Book Recommendations

Book recommendations for designing, administering, analyzing, and reporting survey results

Below is a list of books that we think are invalueable to those seeking more information on how to conduct a successful survey. The recommended books cover the following topics:

Survey Design Books

The Fourth Edition of this book shares the same goal as the previous editions: to guide readers to developing their own rigorous surveys and to evaluate the credibility of other ones. This new edition continues to give practical step-by-step advice on how to achieve the goal. Written in the same clear and accessible style as her other works, author Arlene Fink has completely revised this edition to reflect changes in the way people prepare surveys, use them with the public, and report the results.
Designing and Conducting Survey Research is a complete, practical guide to conducting sample survey research. In a comprehensive manner, it explains all major components of survey research, including construction of the instrument, administration of the process, and analysis and reporting of results. Clear, concise, and accessible, this guide explains how to conduct a survey research project from start to finish. Further, it shows how this research method can be applied in such diverse fields as urban affairs, social science, and public administration. Designing and Conducting Survey Research is an excellent tool that will help both professionals and students understand and explain the validity of sample survey research.
Since it was first published more than twenty-five years ago, Asking Questions has become a classic guide for designing questionnaires which are the most widely used method for collecting information about people's attitudes and behavior. An essential tool for market researchers advertisers, pollsters, and social scientists, this thoroughly updated and definitive work combines time-proven techniques with the most current research, findings, and methods. The book presents a cognitive approach to questionnaire design and includes timely information on the Internet and electronic resources. Comprehensive and concise, Asking Questions can be used to design questionnaires for any subject area, whether administered by telephone, online, mail, in groups, or face-to-face. The book describes the design process from start to finish and is filled with illustrative examples from actual surveys.
Questionnaires are vital for the market researcher: they draw accurate information from respondents; give structure to interviews; provide a standard form on which facts, comments and attitudes can be recorded; and facilitate data processing. Questionnaire Design explains the role of questionnaires in market research and looks at how and when certain kinds of questionnaires should be used. It explains how to compose the right questionnaire for the research. The new edition includes information about online questionnaires and interviews, their problems and potential, and other useful advice about avoiding common errors.
What is a good question? Although there are several potential sources for error in survey data, the validity of surveys is dependent upon the design of the question asked. This invaluable book shows how to word and format questions that will evoke the kind of answers for which they are designed and how to evaluate empirically survey questions. In addition, the book covers how to write good questions aimed at collecting information about objective facts and events, measuring subjective phenomena, some alternative methods for attacking common measurement problems, how to evaluate the extent to which questions are consistently understood and administered, and how to evaluate the data resulting from a set of questions.
The authors discuss research-based questionnaire design and offer guidelines for establishing guiding questions, formatting replies, categorizing responses, and using the Internet effectively for gathering information.

Survey Sampling Books

Survey Sampling by Leslie Kish
An accessible book on sampling techniques with emphasis on and illustrations from surveys of human populations. Explains how to design and execute valid samples of moderate dimensions and difficulty, avoid selection biases and how to become more adept at evaluating sample results, judge their validity and limits of inference, applicability and precision. Contains numerous practical procedures, the domestic arts of sampling along with its science plus invaluable tricks that are usually learned only in apprenticeship.
Sampling Techniques, 3rd Edition by William G. Cochran
Clearly demonstrates a wide range of sampling methods now in use by governments, in business, market and operations research, social science, medicine, public health, agriculture, and accounting. Gives proofs of all the theoretical results used in modern sampling practice. New topics in this edition include the approximate methods developed for the problem of attaching standard errors or confidence limits to nonlinear estimates made from the results of surveys with complex plans.

Survey Analysis & Reporting

Full of tools, tricks, and tips for solving problems in the real world, this book serves as an ideal training manual for those who are new to or intimidated by quantitative analysis and acts as an excellent refresher for those who have more experience but want to improve the quality of their data, the clarity of their graphics, and the cogency of their arguments. In addition to containing numerous updates to the contents—references, URLs, and reading lists—this second edition includes a new foreword, revised chapters, and an epilogue. Mastering the art of problem solving takes more than proficiency with basic calculations; it requires understanding how people use information, recognizing the importance of ideology, learning the art of storytelling, and acknowledging the important distinction between facts and values. Intended for executives, professors, and students, this guide addresses these and other essential skills.
Want to calculate the probability that an event will happen? Be able to spot fake data? Prove beyond doubt whether one thing causes another? Or learn to be a better gambler? You can do that and much more with 75 practical and fun hacks packed into Statistics Hacks. These cool tips, tricks, and mind-boggling solutions from the world of statistics, measurement, and research methods will not only amaze and entertain you, but will give you an advantage in several real-world situations-including business.
Tables and graphs can more adequately communicate important business information when they reflect the good design practices discussed in this practical guide to effective table and graph design. Information is provided on the fundamental concepts of table and graph design, the numbers and knowledge most suitable for display in a graphic form, the best tabular means to communicate certain ideas, and the component-level aspects of design. Analysts, technicians, and managers will appreciate the solid theory behind this outline for ensuring that tables and graphs present quantitative business information in a truthful, attractive format that facilitates better decision making.

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Last updated: 2012 March 03