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Web Survey Bibliography

Title Analysis of four recruitment methods for obtaining normative data through a Web-based questionnaire: a pilot study
Source HAND, 10, 3, pp. 529-534
Year 2015
Database SpringerLink
Access date 26.10.2015

Background: Quality normative data requires a diverse sample of participants and plays an important role in the appropriate use of health outcomes. Using social media and other online resources for survey recruitment is a tempting prospect, but the effectiveness of these methods in collecting a diverse sample is unknown. The purpose of this study is to pilot test four methods of recruitment to determine their ability to produce a sample representative of the general US population. Methods: This project is part of a larger study to gather normative data for the Michigan Hand Outcomes Questionnaire (MHQ). We used flyers, e-mail, Facebook, and an institution-specific clinical research recruitment Web site to direct participants to complete an online version of the MHQ. Participants also provided comorbidity and demographic information. Results: The institution-specific recruitment Web site yielded the greatest number of respondents in an age distribution that mirrored the US population. Facebook was effective for recruiting young adults, and e-mail was successful for recruiting the older adults. None of the methods was successful in reaching an ethnically diverse sample. Conclusions: Obtaining normative data that is truly representative of the US population is a difficult task. The use of any one recruitment method is unlikely to result in a representative sample, but a greater understanding of these methods will empower researchers to use them to target specific populations. This pilot analysis provides support for the use of Facebook and clinical research sites in addition to traditional methods of e-mail and paper flyers.

Year of publication2015
Bibliographic typeJournal article