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Closed-Ended Question

Edited by: Published: 2008
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A closed-ended survey question is one that provides respondents with a fixed number of responses from which to choose an answer. It is made up of a question stem and a set of answer choices (the response alternatives). When administered by a survey interviewer, a closed-ended question is expected to be read exactly as written to the respondent, along with the full set of response alternatives. The set of answer choices must fulfill two properties: they must be (1) mutually exclusive and (2) exhaustive. In being mutually exclusive, no two answers can overlap in conceptual meaning. In being exhaustive, the answer choices must cover all logically possible answers for the question.

The following example of a closed-ended question has answers that are neither mutually exclusive nor ...

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