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Web Survey Bibliography

Title Little experience with technology as a cause of nonresponse in online surveys
Year 2012
Access date 30.04.2012

Relevance and Research question: It is well acknowledged within online survey research that Internet surveys are prone to noncoverage error when panelists are not provided with Internet access. However, even Internet users may differ in their ability and comfort with the Internet technology. This may lead to differential willingness to participate in online surveys within the group of Internet users. If respondents differ in their levels of comfort with the Internet technology from nonrespondents, this may result in a biased sample. We study how experience with technology affects the willingness to participate in an online survey and whether respondents to the online questionnaire differ from nonrespondents in levels of technological sophistication.
Methods and Data: The data were collected in telephone recruitment interviews for a probability-based online panel. The landline and mobile telephone interviews were conducted from February to September 2011. In the course of the interview along with demographic information and some attitudinal questions, Internet-usage related questions were asked. Experience with technology, measured via several questions on Internet proficiency and mobile phone ownership and use, is studied as an addition to a framework for unit nonresponse in surveys (Groves & Couper 1998).
Results: It can be shown that those having lower levels of experience with technology are less likely to be willing to join an online panel. Some of the differences stay significant in the selection step of actual online participation. However, no effect of experience with technology can be found on data quality (marginal effect on breakoff and none for item nonresponse).
Added Value: This study implies the importance of respondents’ experiences with technology for nonresponse in various steps of the recruitment process for a panel. Taking this selectivity aspect into account may prove useful for improving recruitment protocols.

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Year of publication2012
Bibliographic typeConferences, workshops, tutorials, presentations
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Web survey bibliography - General Online Research Conference (GOR) 2012 (40)