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Re: Required to question evolution in Oklahoma

808 phone-surveyed people out of over 300 million doesn't seem to be much of a 
sample size. I 
wouldn't consider it representative of Americans in general.

Where phone surveys are concerned, people may choose the last option more often 
if they're not 
really listening and forget the first option (and don't want to sound dumb by 
asking for it to be 
repeated). Reversing the order of the options might change the outcome of the 
phone survey. In 
this case, option 1 was 'only evolution' while option 3 was 'only god'.

It also seems that about half of responses took the middle ground, which could 
represent a fence-
sitting lack of commitment rather than a carefully considered answer.

The way in which the surveyer asks the questions might also affect the outcome, 
due to the 
surveyer's own biases subtly changing the way in which each option is spoken. 
Sometimes people 
will give the answers they think other people want, rather than their own.

I'd be very wary of the results of telephone surveys. Written surveys, where 
there is no-one 
verbally asking questions, and where people are free to re-read the options and 
answer in their 
own time, tend to be less biased.

On Tue, Feb 1st, 2011 at 8:48 AM, Paul P <turtlecroc@yahoo.com> wrote:

> I find that bill exciting, like a good horror movie--funny *and* 
> scary. Not a surprise, though, if you've seen this survey: 
> http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/10/22/opinion/polls/main965223.shtml


Dann Pigdon
Spatial Data Analyst               Australian Dinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia               http://home.alphalink.com.au/~dannj