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Web Survey Bibliography

Title I Got a Feeling: Comparison of Feeling Thermometers with Verbally Labeled Scales in Attitude Measurement
Year 2012
Access date 28.08.2012

Feeling thermometers are a commonly-used response format that asks respondents to indicate the extent with which they experience a particular feeling using a 0 to 100 scale, typically by saying or writing the number down. As such, they are easily implemented in telephone, paper, and web-based surveys. Many researchers believe that a feeling thermometer represents ratio scale measurement and is superior to other ordinal scales, though Brady (1985) pointed out the problem of inter-person comparability in using feeling thermometers. In a series of 4 web-based studies with over 100,000 U.S. respondents, we compared the relative effectiveness of feeling thermometers with other response formats that use single response scales with 5 to 7 response categories with end-anchored or fully-anchored (response labels for each category) response formats. Though 3 of the studies focused on political ratings (liking for various political figures), 1 study used the measures to assess attitudes toward various large industries. Respondents were randomly assigned to response format. We examined extent of scale differentiation, scale extremity use, and proportion of middling responses for each response format. We further analyzed the correspondence of the measures with other measures (including party ID). We generally found no superiority of the feeling thermometers in predicting behaviors towards each topic, and some slight superiority of fully-labeled response formats over feeling thermometers in concurrent-related validity. Response patterns for fully-anchored formats were quite different from end-anchored formats and the feeling thermometers, which we relate to the differences in validity we obtained.

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Year of publication2012
Bibliographic typeConferences, workshops, tutorials, presentations

Web survey bibliography - The American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) 67th Annual Conference, 2012 (50)