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Coverage Improvement from Experimental Residence Questions

Anne Kearney, Roger Tourangeau, Gary Shapiro, Lawrence Ernst

RR 93/09, 02/28/94


One important source of coverage error in censuses and surveys is the lack of clarity of the roster questions. These questions depend heavily on household informants deciding who "usually" lives in the household. This paper reports on the results of an experiment in which one-third of the sample was asked the usual residence questions, while two-thirds were asked an extensive set of questions on who stayed any time in the last month, who else usually stays at the household, and who else ate there during the last week. This paper discusses how many extra people were picked up through these questions who would otherwise have been missed. The paper also reports on the results of relaxing the requirement of giving full names.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Statistical Research Division | (301) 763-3215 (or |   Last Revised: October 08, 2010