Office of Survey Methods Research


J.L. Esposito, J.M. Rothgeb, and P.C. Campanelli (1994) "The Utility and Flexibility of Behavior Coding as a Method for Evaluating Questionnaires," paper presented at the American Association for Public Opinion Research, Danvers, Massachusetts.

One of the more recent developments in the art/science of pretesting questionnaires has been the systematic use of behavior coding as a methodology for identifying problematic survey questions (Cannell, Oksenberg, Kalton, Bischoping, and Fowler 1989; Morton-Williams, 1979; Oksenberg, Cannell, and Kalton, 1991). In this paper, we review previous research in the area of questionnaire pretesting that has made use of behavior coding and describe our experiences with this methodology. The context for this discussion is the work that was done by a team of researchers in evaluating alternative versions of questions for the Current Population Survey (CPS).

To receive a copy of this paper (usually within 3-5 days), please contact Jim Esposito by phone or voice mail (202-691-6368), by e-mail (, or by mailing your request to: James L. Esposito Bureau of Labor Statistics Postal Square Building, Room 4985 2 Massachusetts Avenue, N.E. Washington, DC, 20212

Last Modified Date: July 19, 2008

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