The purpose of this article is to help you understand and work with clarifying questions effectively. To help you navigate the article we have broken it down into the following sections:
- What is a clarifying question?
- Where are clarifying questions most effective?
- Labeling clarifying questions and possible choices
What is a clarifying question?
Clarifying questions functionality is designed to allow you to add multiple customized responses to questions for which the most accurate answer is dependent on the chatbot user's profile, or on the office that the user is asking about.
Example: The most accurate response to the question "How do I apply for admission?" may depend on whether the chatbot user is:
- applying to an undergraduate program
- applying to a graduate program
- a transfer applicant
- an international applicant
Clarifying questions present the user with a set of possible choices in response to the question asked. Once the user selects a choice, the bot responds with the associated custom response. The two-step process includes setting up the possible choices and customizing each response for the questions they are attached to.
For more information about setting up clarifying questions, review the Creating Clarifying Questions article.
Where are clarifying questions most effective?
Clarifying questions should be used to supplement general library or custom questions that require additional information from the user to provide the most accurate response, which improves the user's overall experience.
General library questions to which adding clarifying questions would have the greatest immediate impact are:
- How do I apply?
- What is the deadline?
- How do I log in?
- How do I register?
- How do I know who my advisor is?
- How do I get my transcript?
- How do I apply for admission?
- What is the admission application deadline?
- What are the requirements to transfer?
- Can I visit the campus?
- How much is tuition?
- How do I apply for financial aid?
- How much does it cost to attend?
- What is our student portal?
- How do I apply for housing?
- How much is on-campus housing?
- What meal plans are available?
- Why do I have a hold on my account?
- How do I remove a hold?
- How do I submit my documents?
Adding clarifying questions is not necessary for questions to which the response is generally not impacted by the user's profile, student population, campus location, etc.
For additional help selecting or creating knowledge base questions utilizing clarifying questions, review the Clarifying Questions Workbook.
Labeling clarifying questions and possible choices
Because clarifying questions can be used across multiple departments, we recommend wording them generally, so that they can be reused in multiple questions across several libraries. Below are some suggested clarifying questions and possible choices, as well as questions where they may be useful:
|Title||Clarifying Question||Possible Choices||Associated Questions|
|Application Type||What do you want to apply for?||Admission|
|How do I apply?|
What is the deadline?
How do I submit my documents?
|Student Type||Please select your student type:||1st year undergrad|
|How do I apply for admission?|
What is the admission application deadline?
How much is tuition?
How do I apply for financial aid?
How do I register?
|Hold Type||What type of hold are you asking about?||Financial Aid|
|Why do I have a hold on my account?|
How do I remove a hold?
|Housing Type||Please select your housing type:||On-campus|
|How do I apply for housing?|
How much is on-campus housing?
How much does it cost to attend?
NOTE: All possible choices for a clarifying question will be presented to the user when they ask any of the associated questions for that clarifying question. Any possible choice(s) to which a custom response is not provided will display the Default Response.
For additional information about possible choices, review the Adding Clarifying Questions to a Knowledge Base Question article.