Randomize questions, question & answer groups

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9 years 8 months ago #52303 by holch
Due to quite frequent requests in the forum, I would like to see the possibility to randomize questions, question groups and if possible answer groups (which do not exist yet, but see www.limesurvey.org/en/support/forums/20-...option-group-headers ).

It should be possible to define a group of questions, and those question should be possible to randomize.

Example:

Q1
Q2
Q3a
Q3b
Q3c
Q4
Q5

So the different Q3 questions should be randomized, while the order of the rest stays the same:

Q1, Q2 -start randomize- Q3b/Q3a/Q3c -stop randomize- Q4

The same thing should be possible with groups of questions, example:

Q1
Q2a,b,c
Q3a,b,c
Q4a,b,c
Q5

So this could look like this:
Q1 -start randomize- Q4a,b,c - Q3a,b,c - Q2a,b,c -stop randomize- Q5.

Ideally the questions within the group should be possible to randomize as well (see above).

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9 years 8 months ago #52334 by Mazi
I agree, this is a very useful feature.

When discussing features, please always add the according idea to the idea tracker and link it here so that other users can vote for it.

Best regards/Beste Grüße,
Dr. Marcel Minke
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9 years 8 months ago #52338 by holch
This makes sense, Mazi. I will do that.

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9 years 8 months ago #53005 by Mazi
jelo wrote:

Since the idea cannot be changed after submitting (or is my impression wrong about that and it can be changed?) I see the purpose of this forum to develop the idea and submitting it after a few pro and cons have been discussed.

I just checked and you can at least edit the proposed solution. So one can outline the problem in details, discuss one or several possible solutions and edit these solutions at a later stage.

Best regards/Beste Grüße,
Dr. Marcel Minke
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9 years 8 months ago #53098 by JoyLaneResearch
Replied by JoyLaneResearch on topic Randomize questions, question & answer groups
I am also interested in having the feature Holch describes. I often used the randomize_groups.pdf workaround in 1.87+, but it does not work reliably in 1.90+. (See Bug Tracker 00557 for additional detail.) Thanks!
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9 years 8 months ago #53165 by Mazi
At least the randomization of groups seems to be implemented for the upcoming 1.91 version: limesurvey.svn.sourceforge.net/viewvc/li...vision&revision=9528

Best regards/Beste Grüße,
Dr. Marcel Minke
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9 years 8 months ago #53184 by JoyLaneResearch
Replied by JoyLaneResearch on topic Randomize questions, question & answer groups
Outstanding!!!

Do we know a release date yet?
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9 years 8 months ago #53188 by holch
This would be really great, if we would have at least the randomization of groups. This would help quite a lot already.

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9 years 8 months ago #53191 by Mazi
You should be able to already test the feature at the dev demo system: www.limesurvey.org/en/support/forums/20-...elopment-test-system

Currently there are several new minor features added by Google Code in students so it might take a while thought most of the feature are ready for a first RC version.

Best regards/Beste Grüße,
Dr. Marcel Minke
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9 years 8 months ago #53209 by holch
Hmmm, I just had a quick look at the randomization of question groups.

Either I don't get it, or the way this feature is implemented isn't really helpful for most market research applications.

From what I understood, you have for example 3 groups A, B, C (let's better say pages) and each group is supposed to have say 3 questions in it.

So you have like question Q1.1, Q1.2, Q1.3. Those are the choices for the first position in the groups A, B, C.

Then there would be Q2.1, Q2.2 and Q2.3. Those would be the choices for the second question on each page, and so on.

However, when I speak of group randomization, I want to create groups of questions (usually those are the same questions, just for different products, aspects, etc.). Then the groups are shown in a random order.

The way it is right now, I can't find a use for it for now. But of course there might be some and I just don't see it. But for most market research projects that I can imagine, the current setup isn't really helpful.

I have uploaded the randomization test survey to the devtest, so it would be good if you guys could have a look at it and give some feedback as well.

I might be totally wrong, but I don't see much of a use the way it is implemented at the moment. I think the implementation at the moment is more complicated than actually necessary.

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9 years 8 months ago - 9 years 8 months ago #53222 by c_schmitz
Mazi was talking about a different thing. The feature in the dev branch is question randomization. So basically you can assign any number of questions to a virtual randomization group and within that randomization group the questions are shown in a randomized order (be aware that a randomization group is not connected to a guestion group in any way).
It is different from your desired feature of 'question group randonization', where you have question groups which have their group order randomized.

Best regards

Carsten Schmitz
LimeSurvey project leader
Last edit: 9 years 8 months ago by c_schmitz.
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9 years 8 months ago #53226 by holch
Hi Carsten,

Thanks for getting back about this. Yes, it is not group randomization, but randomization among a certain "group of questions". Looking at it a little more in detail, it seems to be useful, as it is basically the "randomize questions" bit of this thread, which is great.

The implementation in that sample survey was just a little confusing, so it didn't come out as if it would be a normal "question randomization", which it actually is. The sample survey is just a pretty complicated construction with 3 different "randomization groups".

As far as I have seen you just have write the "randomization group" in the advance features of the question and it will randomize the questions within this group.

The only problem that I see at the moment is to call this "randomization group" a group, as people might easily mix it up with "question groups". I can't come up with a better word at the moment, though.

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9 years 8 months ago #53232 by Mazi
Before writing the documentation for this we should really think about a better term for this feature. Currently it's quite irritating/unclear.

Suggestions?

Best regards/Beste Grüße,
Dr. Marcel Minke
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9 years 8 months ago - 9 years 8 months ago #53238 by JoyLaneResearch
Replied by JoyLaneResearch on topic Randomize questions, question & answer groups
Here's are two situations I find myself in and what I'd really like us to be able to handle (smoothly?).

Situation 1: Client is showing three TV ads in a particular market. In the survey, they want to ask the same series of questions about each. However, they want me to randomize the order of presenting questions about the ads.

In the past, I could use the randomize_groups workaround that was on the documentation site.

Situation 2: Client has three types of product. Each one comes in one of three possible configurations. (Nine products in total.) They want me to show three products in a random order, featuring one product from each group of three.

In the past, I could use the randomize_groups workaround that was on the documentation site coupled with three random number generators with a range of values of 1-3 each and filter as follows:

Group1_rand()
Prod1 (show if RandomA = 1)
Prod2 (show if RandomA = 2)
Prod3 (show if RandomA = 3)
Group2_rand()
Prod4 (show if RandomB = 1)
Prod5 (show if RandomB = 2)
Prod6 (show if RandomB = 3)
Group3_rand()
Prod7 (show if RandomC = 1)
Prod8 (show if RandomC = 2)
Prod9 (show if RandomC = 3)

With this approach, I could show one product from each group and present the groups in random order.

I need a way to get to this as soon as possible because my clients are waiting right now for me to get this figured out and to launch their surveys...tomorrow. (Possible???)

Thanks so much!!!

(P.S. If developers need to see the code, I'd be happy to share.)
Last edit: 9 years 8 months ago by JoyLaneResearch.
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9 years 8 months ago #53240 by holch
Yes, there would be 4 different types of randomization one day:

1. Randomization of items/subquestions
--> This is already available for quite a while, but it would be good to be able to exclude more than one item from the randomization, e.g. other, none, all of the above, etc.

2. Randomization of questions
I think the new feature will cover this quite good.

3. Randomization of question groups
This would be the next step when in comes to the implementation of randomization in Limesurvey. It often happens, that you have to ask the same set of questions for different products, brands, situations, etc. However, you don't want to ask the questions groups in different order, in order to avoid a bias towards the first or the last brand mentioned, for example. This is a quite common necessity in market research.

And then there would be the fourth aspect, which I'd call randomization of subgroups of items/subquestions.

So you have a long list of items, which are grouped into different item groups. it would be good to be able to randomize the item groups (with the header being always on top, of course) and within the subgroups. But I think this will require quite advanced programming.

However, I think randomizing questions is already a good step ahead, next thing should be randomization of question groups. Number for would be great, but is more a nice to have for the moment.

I answer at the LimeSurvey forum in my spare time, I'm not a LimeSurvey GmbH employee.
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