Question Statements

After specifying the session controls (~PREPARE) and questionnaire controls (header statement), you need to tell PREPARE about the specifics of the questionnaire that you wish to use for interviewing. PREPARE uses question statements, compiler commands, and meta commands to control this.

Question statements are used to collect the data or perform other functions. They are discussed below. Compiler commands are used to turn on or off compile options, question control options, and data control options. Meta commands affect the programming environment.

There are two kinds of question statements used by PREPARE:

  1. Data entry questions are statements that display a screen and prompt the interviewer for a response.
    • The specific question type tells PREPARE what kind of data should be allowed as a response, whether to present a list of choices, how to edit the response, and how to store the data.
    • See  BASIC QUESTION TYPES for information on the different question types.
  2. Control statements are constructed in the same manner as data entry questions, but they are not used for data collection.
    • Instead, these statements are used to control the interview process in various ways, display information to the interviewer, or do internal data creation.
    • See CONTROL STATEMENTS for more information on these statements.

Question statements use the specific syntax explained Question Syntax next. The action taken is controlled by the question types. Questions may also be individually controlled according to their data locations, whether they are to be asked based on previous questions, how they are presented to the interviewer and the type of data that is recorded.