How To Use Dummy Questions


You often want to be able to store values/answers in questions for internal use but you do not want those questions to be visible to the surveyor/respondent.

Dummy questions enable you to perform it/ Dummy Questions are questions that:

  1. Not visible to the surveyors (their rules and scripts do not get executed)
  2. Get the value assigned based on a calculation done on other questions' answers
  3. The stored Value is later used for example for:
    • Categorizations
    • Classifications
    • Storing calculated values required during script execution
    • Quota Management
    • Storing Calculated values that need to get exported

Let's look at an example survey that first asks 2 general questions in order to classify the respondent

1st question asks the gender, 2nd question asks the age

Dummy Question as the age groups

One of the most common examples of dummy questions, is storing an Age-Group of the respondent according to the numeric age the respondent has mentioned.

Add a Dummy question with the Answers representing the ranges


Set it as Hidden


Set the question value based on the age question


Then, this data can be used also for recruitment, further scripting logic and even for quota management

For example you can use it for quota definition


You can define it to get exported if required by the data processing team



Dummy questions are hidden questions that can assist you with storing calculated values/answers that are required for the script logic creation.

Learning to use them will make your scripting work more efficient and enable you to implement in a simple way complex tasks.  

Best Practices

  • Questions Q1-Q4 contain the same answer scale. Q5 is a question inside a loop chapter, and the needed logic is to iterate on all the answers that were coded through Q1-Q4. So, instead of generating a long iteration entrance rule referring to Q1-Q4, it will be better to create a dummy multiple selection question (could be placed after Q4) with the same answer scale, auto-set it with all the answers coded through Q1-Q4 (the recommended way would be to write the setting code in an expression question to make sure the settings happens once in one place), and refer only to that question in the iteration entrance rule (using the "Contains" function…)
  • Q1 is a Multiple Selection question contains an answer scale. Q2-Q5 contain the same answer scale. The needed logic is to randomly choose up to 5 answers from all answers that were coded in Q1, and show only those 5 answers in Q2-Q5. In this case you would want to choose those 5 answers randomly, save those (so later in the exported data you'll be able to determine what were the 5 chosen ones) and filter the answers in Q2-Q5 so that only those 5 answers will be displayed.
    The best way would be to create a dummy question after Q1, and generate a code in Q1 end script that will set 5 random answers in that dummy question. Once the 5 answers are set in the dummy question, those will be shown in the data clearly, and you'll be able to use the simple "FilterAnswersByAnswers()" function in Q2-Q5, that will filter from that dummy.

That’s it!

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