Designing data collection devices
Rolling your own versus tailor made
Writing out a set of questions seems quite straight forward. But experience shows that the results do not always support this.
Added to this is the problem is that there are few tailor made devices which fit the needs for a given research task.
One of the best examples of this are student feedback devices. They have been designed to be generic to all courses. Even if the items are well written, they often fail to tap into the needs of particular courses.
Devices which have been designed by others to cover projects similar to what you are looking at, are often only partly OK. If they are from another country the language may not be appropriate.
So what do you do?
Even students in higher education do not use many multi-syballic words. Neither do the majority use complex sentence structures whereby imbedded ideas are expressed in most sophisticated ways; ways which require high level language skills.
The KISS principle applies in survey design - but do not talk down to you potential respondants.
Closed-ended and rating scales
A closed ended question can be categorical, ordered or a rating scale (see Measurement scales).
There are available quite powerful programs for analysising both categorical and ordered data. Not so many years ago, you had to stick with interval scaled data to be able to carry out powerful statistical analysis, but things have changed.