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Report on the New “Type-2" People Questions: A Pretesting Study for the Re-Engineered SIPP

Anna Y. Chan and Jeffrey C. Moore

KEY WORDS: Re-Engineered SIPP, Type-2 people, measurement error, questionnaire design


This paper reports on research findings of a cognitive interview evaluation of a proposed new series of questions designed to capture very basic information about "Type 2" people – i.e., those who lived with a Re-Engineered SIPP sample person for part of the reference year, but who are not members of the sample household at the time of the Re-Engineered SIPP interview. We conducted 13 interviews in two rounds of testing. The initial round (n=5) quickly identified a few obvious problems in the initial design of the questions, most of which had to do with the identification of a "clump" of household members who lived together for the entire calendar year reference period, and thus who shared Type 2 people in common. We also found evidence of response error based on faulty recall, some (but not all) of which can be traced to difficulties with proxy responding. Recall error was evident even among self-respondents, a problem for which simple questionnaire design-type solutions are not apparent. The implemented revisions, tested in round 2 (n=8), seemed to solve the question wording problems observed in round 1, and were generally found to work well.


Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Research Division

Created: December 18, 2007
Last revised: December 18, 2007

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Statistical Research Division | (301) 763-3215 (or |   Last Revised: October 08, 2010