Comparison of Web-based and traditional paper-based survey methodologies
Monte Damon Ladner, Mississippi State University, United States
Mississippi State University . Awarded
The purpose of this research was to compare Web-based and traditional paper based survey research methodologies. Methodologies were compared on the basis of reliability coefficients, criterion related validity, response time, response rate, and perceptions of web-based surveying methodologies.
This study began with a population of 424 members of the American Association of Agricultural Educators. The population was randomly assigned into two groups. One group was established for a Web-based survey and the other was created for a traditional paper based survey. The survey instrument content was the same for both groups and was intended as a measuring tool of the survey methodology.
Respondents' to this study were mostly males (73.9%). In addition, the majority of respondents (37.7%) were full professors. The respondents had a wealth of experience in teaching at the secondary level with 44.4% having taught 16 or more years. In having that much teaching experience, respondents are older. Respondents' who are 40 or older account for 77.8% of respondents. This is in contrast to the years of Internet Technology Experience where 59.2% of respondents have 9 or fewer years of experience. However, respondents have high levels of computer technology experience with 80.6% of respondents having 10 or more years of experience.
Since no other studies were found that examined the use of the Web as a research tool, this study was truly exploratory and experimental in nature. The results showed that when comparing Web-based to traditional paper based research methodologies, only one statistical difference existed between groups. This significant difference was found in the rate of response.
All measures were tested at the .10 level for significance. The .10 level was used instead of the .05 level due to the experimental nature of the study. However, despite this high level of significance the researchers are confident in reporting the data found in the study.
Ladner, M.D. Comparison of Web-based and traditional paper-based survey methodologies. Master's thesis, Mississippi State University.
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