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SurveyMonkey Office Hours
Sarah Cho, Survey Research Scientist
JUNE 9, 2014

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Today’s topic: How many people do I need to take my survey?
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Meet Kathy, a teacher and event organizer
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Organized a conference for teachers and wants to gather feedback on the conference
How many
respondents
do I need?

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Questions to answer before you start surveying
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Who is your target population?
What is the size of your target population?
How much error are you willing to tolerate?
What type of response rate do you expect?
Are you thinking of breaking the data down by subgroups?

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Who is your target population?
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Conference attendees
Invited teachers who did not attend

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What is the size of your target population?
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2500 teachers were invited to the conference
Target population #1: 500 teachers registered and attended (attendees)
Target population #2: 2000 teachers who were invited but did not attend (non-attendees)

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How much error are you willing to tolerate?
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Attendees: Make improvements to conference agenda and amenities
Non-attendees: Improve program quality or relocate conference to improve attendance rate

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How much error are you willing to tolerate?
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What type of response rate do you expect?
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Attendees: 75%
Non-attendees: 25%
How many
teachers will take
my survey?

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What type of response do you expect? Let’s do some math!
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Total sample desired ? expected response rate = total invites needed
Total sample desired:
220 Attendees
350 Non-attendees
Total invites needed:
Attendees: 200 ? 0.75 = ~300
Non-attendees: 350 ? 0.25 = ~1400

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Are you thinking about breaking down the data by subgroups?
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For non-attendees: geographic area
For conference attendees: Seasoned veterans versus newbies
50 % newbies, 50% seasoned veterans
Overall sample size: 220
110 newbies
110 seasoned veterans
10% newbies, 90% seasoned veterans
Overall sample size: 220
22 newbies
198 seasoned veterans

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Questions? Don’t be shy!