About the Scripps Survey Research Center

The Scripps Survey Research Center at Ohio University was founded by two veteran pollsters: newspaper reporter Thomas Hargrove and the late Distinguished Journalism Professor Guido H. Stempel III. Among the questions they asked over the years:

  • Do you know anyone who has beaten his wife?
  • Do you think the federal government is withholding what it knows about flying saucers?
  • Do you believe Jesus of Nazareth was born of a virgin mother, in Bethlehem, under a special star in a nativity heralded by angels?
  • How certain are you the United States did the right thing in going to war against: Iraq, Vietnam, Korea, Mexico, Nazi Germany, Great Britain?
  • Do you think the federal government has made your life better or worse?
  • Do you have any heroes?
  • Do you think people will believe in God a thousand years from now?
  • Do you believe in ghosts?
  • Have you ever been sexually harassed?
  • Do you or does anyone in your home own a gun?
  • What is your least favorite Christmas carol?

Hundreds of questions were asked of tens of thousands of randomly selected adults over the years. The results appeared in nearly 400 daily newspapers, on network television talk shows, even in the pages of the National Enquirer tabloid and Skeptical Inquirer magazine.

Even though the survey center no longer is operational, all previous survey questions and responses remain available on this site.

Guido H. Stempel III was director of the Scripps Survey Research Center and distinguished professor emeritus at the E. W. Scripps School of Journalism (Ohio University). Stempel conducted surveys for more than 40 years for newspapers, school systems and academic research projects. He was editor of Journalism Quarterly for 17 years and is co-author and co-editor of three textbooks on comunication research including Mass Communication Theory and Research.

Thomas K. Hargrove was director of survey research for Scripps Howard News Service and a frequent consultant on polling and quantified research for newspapers and television stations owned by the E.W. Scripps Co. A veteran newspaper reporter and former White House correspondent and investigative journalist, Hargrove specialized in database research.