Increase Response Rates for Online Surveys

April 29, 2013

It’s that time of year again, when surveys open for students. Response rates are frequently a concern for those using online delivery. We wanted to remind you of some ideas from other IDEA users for improving response rates. You’ll find these suggestions collected in Best Practices for Online Response Rates. Here are a few of our favorite ideas.

Show Students a Sample Report
We often recommend passing around a sample report. It shows the class that their responses are taken seriously and will contribute useful suggestions for improvement. They will also be assured that their responses will be anonymous.

Communicate with Students
When planning a communication strategy, it’s also very important to ask students how they get their information in general about the university. Some may depend on announcements in course websites or campus billboards; others on Twitter and other social media. Capital University created a short video to help students understand the importance of completing the IDEA survey.

IDEA Community
Kim Dietrich from University of Saint Francis left a comment on a previous blog that offers some great suggestions for improving response rates. You can also search on our Help Community for more ideas and add your own.

Features in IDEA Online
IDEA Online has some features for reminding students and faculty about completing forms as well. Those using email delivery can schedule reminder emails. You may want to start out with less frequent reminders, then increase them to every day as the due date nears. You can also send status reports to inform faculty about their current response rate.

Sample Status Report

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