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Survey response rates are the number of people who respond to a survey divided by the total number of people who might possibly respond. Put another way, if a researcher is e-mailing, mailing, or handing out a survey, the researcher can calculate the response rate—in the form of a percentage—by dividing the number of people who begin the survey by the total number of people who received the survey by e-mail, mail, or hand. If a researcher e-mailed a survey to 100 people and 63 people opened the e-mail and took the survey, the response rate would be 63%. This entry discusses the importance of response rates for communication researchers and methods for increasing response rates.

Importance of Response Rate

Response rates matter because when sampling a ...

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