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When Change Matters: An Analysis of Survey Interaction in Dependent Interviewing on the British Household Panel Study

Uhrig, S C Noah and Sala, Emanuela (2011) 'When Change Matters: An Analysis of Survey Interaction in Dependent Interviewing on the British Household Panel Study.' Sociological Methods & Research, 40 (2). pp. 333-366. ISSN 0049-1241

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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.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: dependent interviewing; BHPS; interviewer—respondent interaction
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Institute for Social and Economic Research
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2013 07:35
Last Modified: 22 Jul 2013 07:35
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/7176

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