Schedule Meaning, Features, Types, Purpose 

Table of Contents:-

Schedule Meaning

In a professional context, professionals must understand the common types of schedule. Additionally, a schedule is a tool that helps individuals and organizations to plan and manage time effectively. By utilizing suitable types of schedule, one can improve productivity, meet deadlines, and achieve desired results.

Schedule is the tool or instrument used to collect data from the respondents during an interview. It serves as an instrument to structure and organize the interview process effectively. The schedule includes questions, statements (designed to elicit opinions), and blank spaces or tables for respondents to fill out.

An interviewer or investigator personally asks a set of questions on a given topic, creating a schedule. The order, language, and arrangement of questions and schedule components remain unchanged. However, the investigator can explain the questions if the respondent faces any challenges with the questions. It contains both direct questions and questions presented in a tabular format.

The schedule includes open-ended questions and close-ended questions. Open-ended questions allow the respondent considerable freedom when it comes to answering. However, respondents provided detailed answers to the questions. Closed-ended questions require respondents to choose one answer from the options and mark it with a tick.

Types of Schedule

Following are the different types of schedule:

  1. Rating Schedule
  2. Documents Schedule
  3. Institutional Survey Forms of Evaluations Schedules
  4. Observation Schedules
  5. Interview Schedule

Explanations of the above-mentioned types of schedule are as follows:

1) Institutional Survey Forms of Evaluations Schedules

The purpose of using these schedules is to collect data about specialized institutions or agencies, as the name suggests. Furthermore, institutions decide the form and size of evolutionary schedules based on the nature and complexity of their problems. In other words, the more complex the problem, the larger the size of the schedule. For instance, to examine the challenges faced by the American Public Organization for Health Services, researchers employed a schedule spanning 38 pages.

2) Rating Schedule

Rating schedules serve as a tool in business guidance, psychological research, and social research to gauge attitude, opinion, preference, inhibition, and other variables. Additionally, it is apparent from the rating criteria that the purpose of these schedules is to assess the value and trend of the qualities mentioned.

3) Documents Schedule

Researchers employ schedules of this type for the specific purpose of obtaining data about written evidence and case histories. These schedules incorporate terms that appear frequently in documents and typically appear in case histories. For example, In the field of criminology, rating schedules are employed to collect data on various aspects of crimes. This includes information about different types of crimes, crime studies, their frequency, the characteristics of prior offences, and details about the individuals involved in criminal activities. This information may encompass factors such as school-leaving age, age at the time of employment, economic and social status, as well as other miscellaneous details related to crime and criminals.

4) Interview Schedule

A fifth form of schedule is sometimes treated independently; at other times, it is considered included in the fourth type. In an interview schedule, an interviewer presents the questions of the schedule to the interviewees and records their responses in the blank spaces.

5) Observation Schedules

In these schedules, an observer records the activities and responses of an individual or a group within specific conditions. Additionally, the observation schedules may require one or more research workers to be completed. The primary objective of an observation schedule is to verify some information.

Features of Schedules

The features of schedules are:

1. The list of questions is a more formal document, it need not be attractive.

2. The interviewer presents the schedule. The individual poses the questions and takes note of the responses.

3. Researchers can employ the schedule for specific areas of social research.

Purpose of Schedule

1. To facilitate the work of tabulation and analysis.

2. To provide a standardized observation or interview tool to attain objectivity.

3. The schedule serves as a memory aid, ensuring the interviewer/observer remains alert to the various aspects requiring observation.

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Essentials of a Good Schedule

A well-designed schedule should have the following key features –

1. Content: This should cover questions or statements relating to all significant aspects of the study.

2. Dis-sectional: Should look into the problem analytically, dissecting every, major and significant component of the problem.

3. Context: This should suit the context in which it is applied. Different types of studies require different schedules.

4. Criterion: A schedule should use sound logic in classifying respondents according to their expressed opinions.

5. Construction: Arrange it in such a way that questions and statements unfold logically and sequentially. It is better to subdivide it into sections, with each section dedicated to a particular sub-topic of the issue under examination. Allocate a separate section for each objective.

6. Language: Ensure that it possesses a superbly crafted linguistic structure. Clear and straightforward language is the foundation of the schedule.

7. Reliable: This should be reliable such that the same results are obtained whenever the schedule is used when everything else remains the same.

8. Mechanical Aspects: The paper used, margin space provided, spacing, printing quality, and letter size should be normal.

9. Size: Should not be too long or too short. It should provide complete and fair coverage of the subject matter.

10. Qualities to be avoided: Long, complex, presumptuous, personal, embarrassing, hypothetical issues, morality-oriented, upsetting type and necessary questions must be avoided.

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