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Definition

Likert scale

The Likert scale is a commonly used survey tool that requests an assessment of some variable from among a range of potential responses. 

A Likeart scale is bipolar, meaning it provides options ranging between two potential extreme positions. To assess end user acceptance of a software program, for example, as in the figure below, a Likeart scale might provide a series of statements and five responses ranging from "I strongly agree" to "I strongly disagree." 

Likeart scale assessing end user acceptance of software:

Likert scales with five or ten response choices are common, although the number can vary. Recent studies have suggested that scales employing either seven or nine options produce the most informative surveys because common tendencies to select central responses can skew the results. 

Psychologist Rensis Likert (pronounced "lick-urt") created the scale in 1932 for his doctoral thesis. Likert’s original scale rated respondents’ beliefs, attitudes, and feelings towards a number of international issues. 

This was last updated in October 2014

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