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Caroline Roberts

In: The SAGE Handbook of Survey Methodology

Chapter 36: Response Styles in Surveys: Understanding their Causes and Mitigating their Impact on Data Quality

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Response Styles in Surveys: Understanding their Causes and Mitigating their Impact on Data Quality
Response styles in surveys: understanding their causes and mitigating their impact on data quality
Caroline Roberts
INTRODUCTION

It is well established that people's answers to survey questions are influenced by a variety of factors, which interact to produce errors in the data (see e.g. Groves, 1989). Several decades of research in psychology, statistics, econometrics and survey methodology testify to a range of effects observable in respondents’ reported values causing them to deviate from the true values of interest to the researcher. This chapter discusses one such effect, which concerns the measurement of respondents’ evaluations of objects and ideas on rating scales. Specifically, it concerns the tendency for respondents to disproportionately select one response ...

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