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Item Order Randomization

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Edited by: Published: 2008
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Most social scientists are aware that responses to survey questions can be significantly affected not only by how questions are worded but also by the order in which the questions are asked. Furthermore, they are generally aware that the order in which the response alternatives within a question are presented can likewise have a significant influence on survey results. Despite this awareness of order effects in surveys, many investigators either ignore these potential sources of measurement error in designing their questionnaires or fail to systematically control for them by fully randomizing the order in which the items are presented.

Most researchers who suspect there is the potential for an order effect in the questionnaire they are designing will rotate the items, typically presenting them in order ...

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