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Shruti Agarwal

In an itemized rating scale, the respondents are

provided with a scale that has a number or brief
description associated with each category. The
categories are ordered in terms of scale position,
and the respondent are required to select the
specified category that best describes the object
being rated.

A measurement scale with five response categories ranging from
strongly disagree to strongly agree which requires the
respondents to indicate a degree of agreement or disagreement
with each of series of statements related to the stimulus objects.
For example:
I believe that ecological questions are the most important issues
facing human beings today.
Strongly agree / agree / dont know / disagree / strongly disagree
Each of the five (or seven) responses would have a numerical
value which would be used to measure the attitude under

Strongly Agree
Strongly Disagree

Very Frequently

Very Important
Moderately Important
Of Little Importance

Almost Always True

Usually True
Occasionally True
Usually Not True
Almost Never True


1. Keep it labeled:
Numbered scales, or scales that are marked from 1 to 5, for
instance, have also proven to give survey respondents
trouble, since they might not immediately know what end of
the spectrum skews positively versus negatively. Instead, use
words to label your scales, i.e. poor ranging to excellent.
2. Keep it unipolar:
Whenever possible, try to use a unipolar scale that ranges
from extremely to not at all, rather than extremely one
thing to extremely another. For example, its better to use a
scale that ranges from extremely brave to not at all
brave, rather than a scale that ranges from extremely
brave to extremely shy. Why?

3. Keep it odd.
Scales with an odd number of values (e.g. 1-to-7, 1-to-9,
0-to-4) will have a midpoint. How many options should
you give people? Studies have shown that respondents
have difficulty defining their point of view on a scale
greater than seven.
4. Keep it interrogative.
Ask questions whenever possible instead of using
agreement with statements. Avoid scales of agreement /
disagreement whenever possible as they are subject to
an acquiescence bias. This means that survey takers are
more likely to agree with statements no matter what
they say, and less likely to read the question carefully.

5. Keep it inclusive.
Scales should span the entire continuum of responses. For example,
if a question asks how hot your coffee was and the answers range
from extremely hot to moderately hot, respondents who think
the coffee wasnt hot at all wont know what answer to choose.
6. Keep it logical.
Add question logic to save your survey takers some time! For
example, lets say you want to ask how much your patron enjoyed
your restaurant, and then get more details only if they were
unhappy with something. To do this, just add question logic so that
only those who are unhappy skip to a question asking for
improvement suggestions.

How can you analyze data from a

Likert Scale?

Summarize using a median or a mode (not a

mean); the mode is probably the most suitable for
easy interpretation.
Display the distribution of observations in a bar
chart (it cant be a histogram, because the data is
not continuous).

Likert Scales have the advantage that they do not
expect a simple yes / no answer from the
respondent, but rather allow for degrees of opinion,
and even no opinion at all. Therefore quantitative
data is obtained, which means that the data can be
analyzed with relative ease.
However, like all surveys, the validity of Likert Scale
attitude measurement can be compromised due
social desirability. This means that individuals may
lie to put themselves in a positive light. For
example, if a likert scale was measuring
discrimination, who would admit to being racist?


Semantic differential is a type of a
rating scale designed to measure the
connotative meaning of objects,
events, and concepts. The
connotations are used to derive the
attitude towards the given object,
event or concept.

The semantic differential is today
one of the most widely used scales
used in the measurement of
attitudes. One of the reasons is the
versatility of the items. The bipolar
adjective pairs can be used for a
wide variety of subjects, and as such
the scale is nicknamed "the ever
ready battery" of the attitude

The semantic differential is a scale used for measuring

the meaning of things and concepts. There are two
aspects of meaning: denotative and connotative. The
semantic differential measures connotative meaning.
*.Denotation- what a name or concept refers to (denoteto mark out plainly, to indicate)
*.Connotation- the suggestive significance of a word,
apart from its explicit and recognized meaning.
Consider automobiles or school mascots. Names such as
"Jaguar" or "Huskies" denote animals. Their connotation
is power.
In contrast, the "Oregon Ducks project a different image
or connotative meaning.


The scale is set up using polar
adjectives(opposite - meaning
terms) at each end. After
examining the connotative
meaning of thousands of
concepts, Charles Osgood and
his associates identified three
major dimensions of meaning:
strength, value, and activity.
The first two examples below
fit the theme of strength. The
second two represent value,
and the last two illustrate


It is not necessary to use these particular sets of
adjectives, or cover all three themes. Any set can be
substituted, depending on the purpose of the
research. To avoid fatigue or boring the respondent,
do not use more than 20 lines, and 10-12 adjective
pairs is better. Using fewer is acceptable. The
location of the positive attributes should be varied
from left to right. Do not put all the "good" adjectives
on one side, as it might bias the responses. Provide
clear instructions for the respondent so that they put
their marks in the right place. Otherwise, some
people will circle the colons (:).

Although a 7-point scale is common,

it is acceptable to provide fewer
choices, 5 or even 3. For example,

The blanks are numbered from 1 to 7
and then the responses are averaged
for each dimension. The average is
plotted on the form and provides a
profile of the connotation of the
target concept.

Being able to identify the customers attitude towards your

product, or employees satisfaction with her job at your
firm, or the publics feelings towards your brand is powerful
information. Information about peoples emotional attitude
is the most important factor in deciding their sense of
loyalty, trust, and ownership towards your
product/company/brand. This can help quantify pricing
power of your product, ability to retain and attract talent,
brand loyalty and much more. Surveys using Semantic
Differential Scale is the most reliable way to get information
on peoples emotional attitude towards a topic of interest. It
involves asking people to rate a product, company or brand
upon a multi-point rating scale that has opposite adjectives
at each end like satisfied or unsatisfied, love or hate.

1. The primary advantage of semantic
differential scale is that it is easy to
understand the scale and rate correctly and
its popularity makes it very familiar with
responders. This makes information collected
very reliable.
2. Another advantage is in the versatility of
semantic differential scale type questions,
they have been successfully used in customer
satisfaction surveys to scientific behavioral
analysis surveys.

a) The semantic differential requires
respondents that are intelligent and
b) It requires respondents with a
good knowledge of language, who
are willing and able to make fine
c) It would not appropriate for
children, unless presented in a
simplified form