I just made my first survey, *pats myself on my back*. It’s interesting constructing your own survey, because you understand how they work. What happens when you click submit, and how does the author check the results? Google Forms is easy to work with. It also helps you with summarizing results, but for some of the more advanced operations, you still need to calculate manually.
You also start thinking about if questions are formulated the right way. A question badly phrased could skew results in some directions. That’s a bit of the preparations. As for the aftermath – understanding the results – you need to recognize any possible tendencies. Could a large amount of X responses be a result of a large amount of Y responses? Does the people (or things) in question represent the group?
As for phrasing, I’d recommend to use these rules of thumb:
1. Never have questions with one or more alternatives already selected. Make people pick!
2. Use the same “tone of voice” throughout the survey. Never use suggestive phrasing.
3. Always include every possible answer. If that’s not possible, add a “Other” answer.