3) Studying the items to the right, and in conformity with the distribution, the subject selects the three items that are most like his or her position (or, the number of items called for) and places them vertically, under the +5 marker. The order of the items under the markers is not important; all three items beneath the +5 marker will receive the same score when the data are recorded.
4) Turning now to the left side, the subject studies the items, and selects three from among those on the left that are most unlike his or her position. These are placed under the -5 marker. Again, the specific order does not matter.
5) Returning to the right side, the subject now picks the four items that are more like his or her position than the remaining ones among the grouping but which are not as significant as the four already selected (located under +5), and places them under the +4 marker. On second thought the respondent might decide that an item selected for +4 is more importatnt than one uder +5. He or she is perfectly free to switch it with another at this or any other time.
6) Attention reverts to the left side and the process is repeated, with the subject working toward the middle 0 position, until all of the Q-sort statements are positioned from left to right. Items placed under the middle marker (0) often are the ones left over after all of the positive and negative positions have been filled. The reason for having subjects work back and forth is to help them think anew the significance of each item in relation to the others. Once completed, the Q-sort should be reviewed, the subject making adjustments among items that, upon rearrangement, more accurately portray his or her personal point of view.
7) Finally, statement scores for the completed Q-sort are recorded by writing the item numbers on a score sheet that reproduces the Q-sort distribution (cf., the figure above).