Survey Software Logic III

Posted on : January 12, 2017 - by :

An earlier blog covered some of the basic kinds of logic you can use to modify which questions appear and how they appear based on answers to earlier questions.

Most programs offer basic skip logic (some call this feature “branching,” rather than skipping).  In this basic instruction, the program will check the answer to the current question and use it to determine which question appears next.  The most basic programs only let you specify that if this answer is given or that answer is given the skip, should take place.  Slightly more advanced programs introduce the logical not.  They let you determine that a skip should take place if one or more specified answers are not given.

More sophisticated survey software gives you more tools to determine which question appears next.  One is to let you base a skip on the answer to an earlier question, rather than the current question.  For example, letting you skip after question 17 appears, based on the answer to question 11.  More capable programs let you combine the answers to more than one question to determine whether a skip or branching should take place.  For example, after question 17 appears, the skip should take place only if the answer to it is 5 or 7, the answer to question 5 is 1 and the answer to question 14 is not 1-10.

Another more sophisticated feature is to base a skip by comparing two answers.  For example skip if the answer to question 24 is a higher number than the answer to question 23.  Adding some additional flexibility lets you skip if the answer to question 24 is at least 4 more than the answer to question 23.

Another variation the most capable survey software offers is to let a skip be triggered by the number of answers given to a check-all-that-apply type question.  For example skip if three or more answer choices are selected.  Yet another feature can let you skip based on how many people have previously selected a particular answer.  For example, skip if 39 or more people have previously picked answer choice 11.  One use of this ability could be to skip over questions rating a particular item when you have as many ratings of that item as you need.