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Survey Research

Survey research is a method of collecting information by asking questions; it is one way to learn about people’s opinions, behaviors, thoughts, and feelings. Surveys can be specific and have a limited scope or they can be broad with more global goals. There are two defining characteristics of survey research: (a) The variables of interest are measured using self-report and (b) researchers must pay particular attention to the sampling strategy and the implications of sampling for interpreting the data. The wide application and broad coverage of survey research make it a critical tool for researchers focused on life-span human development. This entry outlines the history of survey research; summarizes techniques in survey research and survey research design; and considers sampling strategies, reducing survey error, and ...

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