How Do Polls and Surveys Help People?

There are so many people scattered everywhere, walking around in crowded places and having door-to-door trips to many houses and apartments who are conducting polls and surveys. Their primary purpose is to get the opinion and thoughts of different individuals about various topics, usually topics about certain products sold or to be sold in the market and social or government issues. Some people find these activities bothersome but the people who conduct these polls and surveys all say that this is for the good of many. But how do polls and surveys help people?

Voting is a form of a decision-making method that usually follows after debates, formal or informal discussions, elections and is considered by many a fair form of decision-making activity, especially to groups where democratic and republic form of governance is important. A poll is one form of voting. A poll is done to gather opinion of the public or of group members about a certain topic, by having them pick from a list of choices of answers to the questions presented. However, a poll is not limited to the list of choices that already exist, some polls let the public write a different answer from the choices.

A survey, like a poll, is one way of getting the opinion of a public or a group of people or members of a group about a particular topic. Topics can vary from certain marketing sample items, to environmental researches and scientific experiments or discoveries. Unlike polls which are methods usually utilized to get public opinion about government, environmental and social issues, a survey is a data collection technique that is more formal in presentation and usually done for researches varying extensively from marketing researches to health-related researches.

Polls and surveys help people play a role in the society by allowing the public know about their opinion and judgments on special and important issues of the society. Oftentimes, these polls are conducted by humanitarian and environmental groups who are planning to act against something that they believe are not good for the society and that is why they need the opinion of the public, to help them find confirmation and more backbone and source of strength and confidence to act out their activity or plan. Sometimes, polls are just simple data gathering method of some groups who just want to predict what might happen. Just take for an example what usually happens when there is in an upcoming election. There are polls and surveys all over the internet asking just anyone who they will vote for. And by results of those polls, those groups somehow believe that they can predict the results of the elections.

How do polls and surveys help people? Anyone can see the more obvious answer to that, aside from the giving of support to various groups and organizations. Surveys are conducted by people doing researches and investigations, most of them about environmental, health, medical, and scientific issues. Formal surveys are given to different groups of people, for example adult women who smoke, or teenagers who do charity works, to supply information to ongoing studies that are usually made by graduate school students and/or professionals. These studies are done to gain a more advanced knowledge that is a potential help for the progress of the country, or better, the whole world. For example, surveys and studies regarding distracted driving in US through the use of cell phones while driving are done by various concerned groups and organizations. After the knowledge of the studies' findings, laws have been passed to further decrease the incidence of car accidents brought by distracted driving.

These methods of data collection are undeniably very useful, depending on the polls and surveys' objectives. This is because these activities provide results which may be the missing pieces of the puzzle towards a more progressive and productive life for each and every individual.

Websites For Learning All About Math Surveys

  1. American Association of Public Opinion Resources
  2. CESSDA -- Council of European Social Science Data Archive
  3. Guide to Questionnaires and Surveys
  4. MIPO -- Marist Institute for Public Opinion
  5. NORC--The National Opinion Research Center
  6. The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
  7. SUNY Stony Brook: Center for Survey Research
  8. Survey Instruments in Information Systems
  9. University of Wyoming Survey Research Center