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Journal Article

When change matters: an analysis of survey interaction in dependent interviewing on the British Household Panel Study

Authors

Publication date

2011

Abstract

The authors examine how questionnaire structure affects survey
interaction in the context of dependent interviewing (DI). DI is widely used in
panel surveys to reduce observed spurious change in respondent circumstances.
Although a growing literature generally finds beneficial measurement properties,
little is known about how DI functions in interviews. The authors systematically
observed survey interaction using behavior coding and analyzed an application of
DI to obtain respondent employment characteristics. The authors found
respondents indicated change in circumstances through a number of verbal
machinations, including mismatch answers and explanations. Assessing whether
these behaviors influenced subsequent question administration, the authors found
qualitative evidence that the information disclosed when negating a DI question
leads to subsequent interviewing errors. Quantitative analyses supported this
evidence, suggesting that standardized interviewing deteriorates as respondents
struggle to identify change in their circumstances. This analysis suggests that
the reliability of detail about changed circumstances may not be improved using
DI.

Published in

Sociological Methods and Research

Volume and page numbers

40 , 333 -366

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0049124111404816

ISSN

16

Links

http://serlib0.essex.ac.uk/record=b1646523~S5

Notes

Albert Sloman Library Periodicals *restricted to Univ. Essex registered users*

#519982


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