Survey Science. Boy, do we love the sound of that. As our most devoted blog fans, you might already know that Survey Science happens to be one of our most popular blog topics.
We cover the art and (wait for it) the science of survey design as well as discuss survey research and methodology best practices so that you can create quality surveys. And quality surveys leads to quality data. Nobody knows this better than our special guest blogger, Kate Madden, a huge fan of Survey Science—literally.
Kate’s a 13-year-old student from Dublin, Ireland. After we learned about her totally unique use of SurveyMonkey for her school science fair, we just couldn’t wait to share her survey story with you. Love candy? Love horses? Love surveys and data? (Of course you do!) Well then. You’ve come to the right blog post.
The floor’s all yours, Kate.
Do you think a Mars Bar would make a pony gallop faster?
This is the question I asked for my BT Young Scientist Project. The BT Young Scientist Competition is in its 50th year in Ireland. All 480,000 Secondary School (AKA high school for you Americans) students in Ireland are eligible to enter the competition—and only 500 get through to the public exhibition. I’m happy to share that my science project was selected by the screening judges to compete in the finals in the RDS Exhibition Centre, Dublin.
I participate in Mounted Pony Games. Mounted Pony Games is an equestrian sport. It consists of many games that you would play while riding your pony and speed is all important. In a competition, we have ten races and then a half hour break. We compete in another ten races but in the following half hour break, people might feed their ponies oats to make them go faster. Why? Oats provide protein. I was curious to see if eating Mars Bars would make my ponies gallop faster than if they were to eat oats.
So do Mars Bars increase speed for ponies?
SurveyMonkey has really helped me to find out the answer to my question. I sent out my survey consisting of a single and very simple question which would take less than 10 seconds to complete: “Do you think a Mars Bar would make a pony gallop faster?” I emailed messages including my survey link to all of my contacts asking them to answer it and requested they then send my survey to all of their contacts.
In the end, I got 815 responses! The reason I decided to use SurveyMonkey was because I needed to quickly and easily find out what the general public thought. SurveyMonkey is very well known and people are not afraid to reply to such a survey.
The majority replied saying they believed a pony would indeed gallop faster after eating Mars Bars. However, my research found the opposite!!! I have been told by nutritionists that when a lot of processed sugar quickly enters the blood, a chemical called insulin is released. Insulin is from the pancreas and it controls how much sugar is in the bloodstream. When a lot of sugar quickly enters the blood, the insulin sucks all of that sugar out, but it also takes in some of the sugar too. This makes the ponies have less sugar in their systems than they did before a lot of sugar was given to them.
As a result of the incredibly large number of survey responses that came in, I gathered truly surprising information about my hypothesis. My science project made it into the finals at the BT Young Scientist Project exhibition thanks to SurveyMonkey and the support of The Veterinary School in University College Dublin. I think people learned a lot about a pony’s physical abilities. And the next time you are asked how a pony might gallop faster, you will know the answer!
Congratulations, Kate and thanks again for sharing such a unique survey story with all of us.
Don’t forget, the next time you’re super curious about something, anything—be sure to check out our wide range of survey templates. All the questions have been chosen carefully by our team of in-house survey scientists to get you optimal results.