NSurvey - Matrix Questions

NSurvey supports matrix questions in its surveys. The only problem with this type of question was that in the reporting section of NSurvey, it listed each row of a matrix question as a possible selection, but it didn’t include which matrix it belonged to. This leaded to a very confusing list, when you have several identical matrix questions which only differentiated in the main question asked.

The solution I had in mind was to change the output from “row question” to “matrix question – row question”. To do this, I first had to modify some stored procedures to include the ParentQuestionText field. After this I traced down the places where the possible questions were added to the dropdown list and added some logic to check if it was a matrix question and concatenated the matrix question with the row question.

One of the places where I had to do this was in the BarChartReport class, which was responsible for generating charts of the rated matrix questions. In the SetQuestionData method the following piece of code could be found


engine.Title.Text = Server.HtmlDecode(

       Regex.Replace(_dataSource.Questions[0].QuestionText, "<[^>]*>", " "));

Which I changed to the following:


if (_dataSource.Questions[0].IsParentQuestionIdNull()) {

  engine.Title.Text = Server.HtmlDecode(

Regex.Replace(_dataSource.Questions[0].QuestionText, "<[^>]*>", " "));

} else {

  String questionText = String.Format("{0} - {1}",



  questionText = questionText.Replace(Environment.NewLine, "");

  questionText = questionText.Replace("\t", "");

  questionText = questionText.Replace("<p>", "");

  questionText = questionText.Replace("</p>", "");

  engine.Title.Text = Server.HtmlDecode(

                    Regex.Replace(questionText, "<[^>]*>", " "));


This change, together with the changed procedure because the ParentQuestionText had to be used, resulted in charts with the correct title.

The only thing left was to make sure this change also occurred in the HTML report and the questions dropdown list.

To do this I had to add the following piece of code to the GetQuestionListWithSelectableAnswers method in the DataAccess part:


foreach (QuestionData.QuestionsRow row in questions.Questions) {

  if (!row.IsParentQuestionIdNull()) {

    row.QuestionText = String.Format("{0} - {1}",





These changes made the matrix questions display correctly, as you can see in this picture, which represents a five-question matrix.

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