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Final dispositions (or final sample dispositions) are a set of codes or categories used by survey researchers to document the ultimate outcome of contact attempts on individual cases in a survey sample. Assigned after field work on a survey has been completed, final dispositions provide survey researchers with a terminal, or ending, status of each unit or case within the sampling pool. Survey researchers use final sample dispositions for two reasons: (1) to calculate response rates and (2) to help assess whether the sample might contain nonresponse error.

One important purpose of final dispositions is to calculate survey response rates. It is common practice for survey researchers to compute the response rates at the end of a survey's field period. Response rates are a common measure ...

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