Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Michigan Questionnaire Documentation System

Technology #4975


Blaise® is a questionnaire tool (software) developed by Statistics Netherlands and used by statistical agencies and large data collection organizations worldwide. MQDS is possibly one of the the only products that can easily create the specific documentation (for example questionnaire documentation, codebooks, etc.) from Blaise, making it extremely useful to the Blaise user community. (Blaise is a registered trademark of Statistics Netherlands)


The Michigan Questionnaire Documentation System, or MQDS, is a software tool used to help create questionnaire documentation, codebooks, and other such documentation based upon the Blaise data model for a study. It works by analyzing the data model and its associated files, exporting that information (or metadata) to an XML file, rendering the needed elements via XSL (stylesheets), and then generating HTML or RTF output for the user. Such documentation can be used when testing instruments, reviewing questionnaires, for documentation purposes, as well as when comparing questionnaires across data models or across studies. MQDS is capable of creating codebooks by reading in a Blaise database and a corresponding Blaise data model and by applying several schemas and a stylesheet, and then outputting the questionnaire and data file contents into a codebook in HTML or RTF format.

Applications and Advantages


  • Producing documentation from Blaise databases


  • Possibly one of the only-nl-tools for creating documentation from Blaise databases
  • Can be used without Blaise licensing.