Behavioral science research approaches help to better understand psychological, sociological, and anthropological factors in the survey data collection process. Research in this area could be conducted with existing data or with studies conducted in the field or in the BLS Behavioral Science Research Laboratory. The lab is a fully equipped usability lab and observation room, with audio and video recording capabilities, and facilities for running computer-administered experiments.
Many BLS surveys utilize interviewers for data collection. Research shows that interviewers can significantly impact respondents, the interview process, and the data collected. Obtaining a better understanding of the interactions between interviewers and respondents is important as BLS develops training, instruments, and procedures. Potential research topics include:
Nearly all BLS household surveys rely on respondents’ abilities to recall information about their past behaviors to answer survey questions. Having a good understanding of how autobiographical information is stored and retrieved from memory will help BLS design more effective survey questions and procedures. Potential research topics include:
Like most surveys, achieving or maintaining a high response rates for BLS establishment surveys has become more difficult over time. We seek to better understand non-response across our establishment surveys, answering questions such as:
As the use of technology advances, BLS programs are in the process of adding new modes to existing surveys to accommodate respondent preferences. Examples include the web diary in the American Time Use Survey, and use of mobile devices in the Consumer Expenditure Survey. There are many issues related to this, including:
BLS designs and builds many kinds of systems, and we are always looking to improve the user experience of our products. Potential research topics include:
BLS strives to provide accessible products. Potential relevant research topics in this area include:
Last Modified Date: November 21, 2014