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QPL is a complete web questionnaire development system. Using a simple language to describe your questionnaire, it automatically builds all the files you need to create a dynamic web site.
Whether you are using the QPL HomeSite Edition, which installs inside of HomeSite as an "Add In," or the QPL Console Edition, in which you run the QPL programs yourself from the DOS console window, a batch file, or a shortcut, the basic web site creation steps are the same.
First you unpack a copy of the standard QPL system files. These contain all the static PHP, graphic, and sample files that are used for each project. There are over 70 files that work together to run your questionnaire web site.
Then you start writing your questionnaire using the QPL language. This is written as text file, using the QPL commands to define your question types and skip instructions.
At any point, you may compile your program and build a local HTML version of your web site. While this version of your project contains no server or data base automation, it lets you view your questionnaire instrument in the same format that will be used when it is deployed on a web server and linked to a data base. Here, all the navigation links and default answers work and appear just as they will later on the server. This lets you refine your questionnaire and test the look and feel without deploying each iteration on your server.
When you are ready for deploy your questionnaire on a web server, you use your questionnaire program to build the PHP version of your questionnaire files. This version contains all the server-side automation that links your questionnaire to a MySQL data base. You must copy these files to your server, and run the MySQL script that is generated at the same time.
After your questionnaire is installed, and you set your project configuration options and added user accounts with email addresses, you can use the web site to send a customized email message to each respondent announcing your survey. Later, you can send follow up messages to people who have not completed your survey.
Once you have launched your survey you can already start analyzing results. While you can view summary statistics while the survey is running on the web site as it is running, you can also use the system to generate SAS or SPSS statistical programs that read and fully label the data that you export from the web site. You may also export the data to askSam, a text retrieval/analysis program, or as a tab delimited file which can be loaded into many applications such as Excel.
And, beginning with Version 5.04.001, you can also perform a content analysis of the responses made to open-ended questions. Functions on the administrative pages let you define topic tags, apply tags to responses, and create summary reports that show how the tags were applied, including inter-rater reliability statistics.
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