Tobi Johnson
Post count: 19

Great question @Alison:

It depends on the type of survey item. For example, if you are asking survey respondents to rate their agreement with a statement (e.g., “I feel my orientation training prepared me for my role”), then first person is best (in other words, it’s better than “Orientation training at XYZ Nonprofit prepares volunteers for their roles.”

To get the most reliable data, its best to post questions that will mostly clearly reflect the respondent’s own experience as closely as possible. So, for the two examples above, the second example asks them to make a broad generalization about the volunteer training ( in other words to guess what others are thinking) versus the first which asks them to reflect on their own experience.

On the other hand, if you are asking respondents to choose from a list (e.g., At which frequency would you like to receive the volunteer newsletter?), second person will work as well.