D. Cantor and J.L. Esposito (1992) "Evaluating Interviewer Style for Collecting Industry and Occupation Information," Proceedings of the Section on Survey Methods, American Statistical Association, 661-666.

As part of the monthly collection of job-related data on the Current Population Survey (CPS), interviewers ask four open-ended questions pertaining to the respondent's industry and occupation (I/O) status, and record responses to these questions as closely to verbatim as possible. Recorded information is subsequently coded into three-digit I/O categories at the Census Bureau's coding facility in Jeffersonville, IN. The purpose of this paper is to report on research examining the effects of the interviewer's data-collection style (e.g., probing strategies, recording efficiency) on the quality of the information collected and the accuracy of the I/O codes subsequently generated. The study involved asking Census Bureau coders to listen to a set of audiotaped CPS CATI interviews and to: (a) record relevant information necessary for coding the case, (b) classify the descriptions into appropriate I/O categories, and (c) comment on the interviewers' probing style. Analyses of these data were useful in identifying the types of problems interviewers have when administering the I/O questions and led to a set of recommendations for improving the quality of information collected in the I/O series of the 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 (Esposito.Jim@bls.gov), 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