Question Writing Guidelines

All questions should:

  • Be neutral/balanced/show no bias
  • Be sensitive to current events
  • Use language recognizable to humans, not robots or professional survey-takers
  • Have mutually exclusive answer choices - each answer option must be completely different from the other options (i.e., there's no overlap in the answers)
  • Have exhaustive answer choices - every question should have an answer for every respondent
  • Always include an opt-out

Approach articles around trauma with extreme caution (mass shootings, sexual assault allegations, etc.). Better yet, avoid them completely.

Please consider attending the CivicScience Engagement Question Writing Training that we offer regularly.



Engagement questions are meant to engage your audience by serving relevant polls based on your site designation/current events. They are meant to entice your readers to answer the poll and engage with the content on your site. They serve as a boundary between the site/article content and the next questions in the poll, which are research and demographic-based to meet various business objectives.

Value questions are used for research purposes. Please contact your account manager for guidance in creating value questions.

Media partners can create engagement questions in the poll unit admin tool or in the InsightStore. Value questions must be created in the InsightStore.