Web Survey Bibliography

Title Survey cooperation: response to initial and follow-up requests - Recent experiences from the recruitment of members for a mixed-mode access panel using random telephone samples
Year 2009
Access date 18.11.2009

Since access panels have found a remarkable spread in the last years, a well-founded assessment of this approach is needed to resolve its suitability for survey research on general populations. Do sample surveys drawn from access panel frames make valid inferences possible?

There are two major threats to the validity of such inferences, self-selection processes and mode/response effects. Self-selection is likely to lead to biased sample estimates, while mode effects and mode-specific response effects preclude any generalisation of outcomes produced by one survey mode to another.

To study both types of effects, we built up an access panel for the adult population of Germany using probability sampling for the recruitment of people by phone (landline and cell phones). Much effort went in the collection of auxiliary data to assess if and in which ways the recruitment samples suffer themselves from unit non-response. In particular a rich set of paradata was collected to predict response propensities. The set of variables includes detailed information about the contact course, the number of contact attempts and an interviewer‟s rating of respondent‟s degree of reluctance. Also included is a detailed coding scheme of interviewers convincing efforts. The survey design is flexible in terms of questionnaire length (full, core, just one “exit” question) and interviewer tailoring. Responses to initial survey requests are analyzed using this set of paradata.

The analysis of initial survey cooperation is completed with an analysis of succeeding selection steps. These steps involve internet access/usage, the expression of general readiness to join the access panel for repeated survey participations, the expression of readiness to accept a specific survey mode (landline phone, cell phone, internet) by provision of corresponding valid access information (telephone numbers and email address), the actual entry into the panel when re-contacted afterwards, and finally the actual participation in access-panel based surveys. Except for the last step, a brief description of the probabilities associated with the sequence of selection steps will be given and completed with a detailed analysis of determinants of follow-up cooperation. This analysis of expressed readiness can draw on various sociological and psychological measures of the recruitment interview. The recruitment interviews include also a survey attitude scale which in a couple of preparatory studies proved promising in explaining follow-up survey cooperation. In addition the analysis can lean on a set of metadata collected to let the respondents evaluate various aspects of both the interview and the questionnaire. The underlying project “Access Panel and Mixed-Mode Internet Survey” is part of the Priority Programme on Survey Methodology (PPSM) of the German Research Foundation (DFG).

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Year of publication2009
Bibliographic typeConferences, workshops, tutorials, presentations