Are there any articles or canonical data available for determining the ideal length of a survey?

Trying to figure out what would be a sweet spot for the number of questions that can be in a survey. Any guidelines that can help design a to-the-point yet informative survey would be helpful.

  • This question seems to be rather broad, so if you can provide some information about the type of research you want to do and the format of the survey I think it will help provide better answers.
    – Michael Lai
    Aug 25, 2019 at 23:28

1 Answer 1


The Duration will depend on:

  • the answer form (Yes/no, some number, a written answer, etc.)
  • your participant
  • how boring the questionnaire is
  • how ambiguous the question is Most of the time, "magic numbers" will be off by a fair margin

The best predictor of test duration will be a "pre-test". No first draft is perfect anyway. So you simply should present your first draft of a test to two colleagues and measure how long it will take them to complete it. Also you should ask them for their comments regarding some questions of your tests. This will only take about 15 min + 2*Test Duration and is extremely valuable. You will get an idea about the duration of your test and know how to improve it.

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