EXERCISE 9 .4
Using Structured Interview Questions from the GSS
The GSS, conducted by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC), uses a
structured interview schedule. The GSS was administered annually from
1972 and then biennially from 1994 to a national probability sample.
Some questions are asked on every survey, other questions have rotated,
and some have been used only in a single survey.
The GSS measures a great many variables using answers to questions as
indicators. The variables included on past surveys cover a wide range of
behaviors, among them drinking behavior, membership in voluntary
associations and the practice of religion, and numerous attitudes, such
as opinions about abortion, affirmative action,capital punishment,
family roles, and confidence in the military.
Browse through the archives of the GSS to find questions asked between
1972 and 2008, which is available at http://sda.berkeley.edu/archive.htm
and select a few variables of interest.
1. List the names of the variable and the questions on the GSS that are the indicator(s) of those variables.
2. Comment on the specific questions that were used. Do you think they
are valid indicators for the variables? Are the questions clear and easy
to understand? What do you think of the answer categories?