Marketing Research Glossary - Q

Q Spread: The distance between the first and third sample quartiles.

Q-Sort: A term commonly used to describe a data collection technique in which respondents are given a set of cards (each with a different word, phrase, description, or picture) and asked to sort those cards according to a question or rule.

Qualified Refusal: A respondent who qualifies to participate in a survey by virtue of fulfilling the screening qualifications, but who refuses to participate in the following survey.

Qualified Respondent: See Eligible Respondent.

Qualifying Incidence: The percentage of potential respondents who qualify to participate in a survey. The incidence is a percentage between zero and 100.

Qualitative Research: Research that is open-ended and nondirective in nature, so that participants can give any answer they wish. Focus groups and depth interviews are examples of qualitative research techniques. Observation research (ethnography) is also classified as a qualitative technique. Learn More

Qualitative Variable: A variable whose values are classifications or categories and are not subject to quantitative representation. Examples would include sex, occupation, marital status, etc.

Quality Assurance: The name of Decision Analyst's internal quality verification department and processes. A formal Quality Assurance Department is essential to the consistent accuracy of research surveys.

Quality Control (QC): The process of verifying the accuracy of marketing research projects. Decision Analyst operates a large, highly trained Quality Assurance Department that verifies the accuracy of its surveys and research projects by verifying compliance with Decision Analyst quality standards at each stage in the research process.

Quantile: A variate that divides a sample into equal-sized subgroups, or divides a probability distribution into equal subsegments or categories.

Quantitative Research: Marketing research based on large samples, structured questionnaires, surveys, and numeric analysis of the results. Quantitative research can also be applied to database analytics and the quantitative analysis of other marketing data sets. Learn More

Quantitative Variable: A variable whose values are numerical in nature. Examples include weight, age, income, etc. Quantitative variables are further classified as being either discrete or continuous.

Quartiles: The division of a distribution into quarters (similar to the way the median divides the distribution in half).

Quasi-Experiments: Studies or experiments in which the researcher lacks complete control over the experimental treatments or related variables.

Question Group: This group contains all question types.

Questionnaire: A set of questions to collect the data necessary to fulfill the objectives of the research project.

Queuing Theory: A modeling technique used in Operations Research and Management Science based on the allocation of required resources. The model identifies the resources required to meet the anticipated level and distribution of demand, mapped against time and business cycles. Queuing theory models the congestion on a network or traffic lines, or queues. Learn More

Quota: The total number of surveys or interviews to be completed. A survey will typically have multiple quotas or quota cells. For example, a survey might have quotas by market and for men versus women.

Quota Cell: A quota for a subset of the sample. For example, if a survey sample had two markets (Dallas and Houston), and gender (males and females) as sample controls, then the survey would have four sample quota cells, and quotas would be set for each cell. A quota cell, for example, would be Houston men or Dallas women.

Quota Samples: Samples in which quotas (number of survey completes) are established for each population segment. Generally, the sampling within the population segments is nonrandom.

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