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• May 25, 2018, 02:30:14 AM

### Poll

#### From 1 to 10 -- Which is the best 1 or 10?

1
0 (0%)
10
35 (100%)

Total Members Voted: 35

### Author Topic: When taking a survey . . .  (Read 3588 times)

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#### jpcher

• Member
• Posts: 10434
##### When taking a survey . . .
« on: May 06, 2013, 03:58:35 PM »
CW is making up a survey at work.

She insists that 1 should be the best because that means "this" is #1.

Others say that 10 is the best because 10 points = more points than 1.

Just a silly question . . . curious as to your thoughts?

• Member
• Posts: 5872
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2013, 04:08:13 PM »
I am with her - 1 is the best.

But, on a survey, the right answer is "write ridiculously detailed questions that cover every possible interpretation but are still concise and clear." How I loved writing surveys...

#### Luci

• Member
• Posts: 7833
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2013, 04:10:05 PM »
I've been on two consumer survey boards, and they both had the higher number as best. Amazon has 5 stars as the best.

If the order is changed, it will confuse most survey takers.

#### Where's the Quiet?

• Member
• Posts: 228
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2013, 04:12:46 PM »
Depends on the question. If it's something like, "Rank these items" your top choice should be 1. If it's, "How much do you like" it should be 10 as the best. I guess I see it as similar to the pain scale...1 is the weakest and 10 is the strongest.

#### Onyx_TKD

• Member
• Posts: 2023
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2013, 04:33:23 PM »
Depends on the question. If it's something like, "Rank these items" your top choice should be 1. If it's, "How much do you like" it should be 10 as the best. I guess I see it as similar to the pain scale...1 is the weakest and 10 is the strongest.

I agree. The scale depends on A) what type of question you're asking and B) what quantity you're comparing. The question should make it clear which way the scale goes, or it's useless.

I also agree with Where's the Quiet's examples. You rank things starting with number 1 being the item that best meets the criteria of the question. You can tell it's a "ranking" question when every number must have an item associated with it (best=1, 2nd best=2...). You start from 1 and count down until you either run out of items to rank or arbitrarily cut of the list at a certain number (e.g. a "top 10" list). OTOH, if the question asks you to indicate where the magnitude of something falls between two extremes on a scale of 1-10, then 10 is generally the "strongest" or "largest" end of the scale (the "most" of the quantity considered = the largest number of points). In this case, it's not a question of "best," it's a question of the magnitude of some quantity. For example, if you're scoring pain on a scale of 1-10 where 10 is the strongest pain, then 10 is "most pain" (thing measured), but 1 is "best" (no pain). If you're scoring how well an athlete performs in the Olympics, then 10 is both "closest to perfect" (thing measured) and "best."

#### veryfluffy

• Member
• Posts: 3122
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2013, 04:46:20 PM »
For ranking, 1 is the best.
For rating, 10 is top marks.

#### DottyG

• Member
• Posts: 18194
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2013, 05:19:38 PM »
Just took one today.  It, like all pretty much all the others I've taken, has 10 as the highest.  I agree with the previous poster.  If you change that around, you'd better be really, really clear as to the instructions (and have an error rate for those who answer backwards).  Because people are automatically conditioned to use 10 as the highest rating.

#### Bluenomi

• Member
• Posts: 3439
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2013, 11:33:20 PM »
For ranking, 1 is the best.
For rating, 10 is top marks.

I'd agree with that. It realy does depend on how you word the question and what information you want. Just make it clear!

#### MrTango

• Member
• Posts: 2905
##### Re: When taking a survey . . .
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2013, 11:47:51 AM »
When I was taking Social Stats, we were taught that it didn't matter whether we used 1-10 or 10-1, as long as we were consistent throughout the survey.  I always arranged the number scales so that the highest number represented the best (or strongest agreement)