Day 1: Simple Survey with Text Questions
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Previously we asked you to get familiar with some basic Microsoft Windows terms and operations and to explore the PocketSurvey MENUBAR and TOOLBAR. If you have not done that, go back and do it now before continuing with this lesson.

This lesson will show you how to create a simple survey with TEXT questions. TEXT questions are the simplest type of question where you PROMPT the END-USER with a QUESTION and the END-USER types in free format text.


You are referred to as the SURVEY DESIGNER, whereas the END-USER is the person who will eventually RUN your survey on a POCKET PC. Also the terms SURVEY and QUESTIONNAIRE are synonymous with each other.

Now do the following.

    1. Open PocketSurvey Designer using the appropriate DESKTOP ICON. Notice PocketSurvey always loads the survey you were working on last and restores all the window positions that you had previously.

    1. Click NEW on the TOOLBAR. Clicking NEW will start a completely new survey, with only one question defined. Notice this question has a QUESTION PROMPT of SURVEY IDENTIFIER and it has the number 0 before the prompt. We call this QUESTION ZERO; it is a special question that is be used to IDENTIFY a particular SET of questions and answers. You cannot delete this question, you can only rename it, change its TYPE or make it a SECTION. More on this special question later.

    1. Before we start adding questions it is good practice to SAVE your new file with a name of your choice. Choose FILE | SAVE AS from the MENUBAR. You will now see a standard Windows DIALOG asking you for a filename. Type 'Day 1' as the filename and then click SAVE.

    1. When you save a new file for the first time you will be prompted to fill some information about the survey and who is designing it. This is useful since it forms part of the QUESTIONNAIRE | CHANGE LOG, which can be used to document important changes to your survey designs. Fill in the information you want and click the OK button.

    1. We are almost ready to start creating some questions, but before we do that I want to explain two other areas in the MAIN WINDOW. You will see two PANES between the MENUBAR and the STATUS LINE. The one on the left is called the SECTIONS AREA and shows the different SECTIONS that your survey is broken down into. The one on the right is called the QUESTIONS AREA and shows the questions defined for the currently selected SECTION. In this lesson we will only be concerned with one SECTION called the MAIN SECTION.

    1. Now position your mouse cursor at the diamond in QUESTIONS AREA. The diamond is the INSERT POINT at the end of a survey and questions are always INSERTED above the point where your cursor is. Click the EDIT BUTTON on the MAIN TOOLBAR. You will see a new screen appear that we refer to as the QUESTION DEFINITION DIALOG. This DIALOG is where you will do most of your design work, so it is worthwhile getting to know it well!

    1. It is best to move the QUESTION DEFINITION DIALOG to a place that does not overlap the SECTIONS AREA or QUESTIONS AREA. It might be worth setting your screen resolution to at least 1024 by 768 pixels, if you do not know how to do this, consult your Microsoft Windows documentation. You can also keep this dialog OPEN at all times if you prefer.

    1. On the QUESTION DEFINITION DIALOG you will see a line of TABS with LABELS such as 'text', 'number', 'menu', 'ticklist', and so on. Each TAB represents a different TYPE of question. Select each one in turn and notice there are different DETAILS to specify for each question type.

    1. Click the TAB labelled TEXT. We are going to work with simple TEXT type questions first. Remember TEXT questions are the simplest type of question where you PROMPT the END-USER with a QUESTION and the END-USER types in free format text.

    1. On the right of the QUESTION DEFINITION DIALOG are some INPUT areas that are common to most question types. The important areas for this lesson are the QUESTION PROMPT and the DATA DESTINATION FILE.

    1. Type, "Enter your name" in the QUESTION PROMPT input area.

    1. In the DATA DESTINATION FILE input area you will see a PULLDOWN MENU, click the down arrow and choose SINGLE ITEM from the list. This will ensure that the answer to the question is saved in the SINGLE ITEM file. If you chose NONE the answer to the question would be discarded. You may ask, "why discard answers?" well there are times when you want to do this, but we will discuss that in a later lesson.

    1. Now click the INSERT button and you will see your question added to the QUESTIONS AREA.

    1. Position at the diamond again and create another question with a question prompt of "Enter your address", choose the DATA Destination FILE and click INSERT. Repeat this process until you have entered all your questions. Create as many questions as you like, but keep it simple for now and make all the questions a TEXT type.

    1. When you have finished defining QUESTIONS click the SAVE BUTTON on the toolbar.

The next lesson will explore running this survey on the HANDHELD SIMULATOR and how to RECEIVE the answers back to your desktop PC. If you are curious and want to march on ahead just click the RUN button on the PocketSurvey Designer TOOLBAR and you should see the HANDHELD SIMULATOR screen appear. Experiment with what you have learned so far until the next lesson tomorrow!

Final Tip

Click the HELP TOOLBAR BUTTON launch the ONLINE HELP manual for PocketSurvey. Select 'Chapter 14: Questions in Detail' from the CONTENTS list to learn more about defining questions in PocketSurvey. If you do not know how to use ONLINE HELP please refer to your Microsoft Windows documentation.

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