Structured Interview Questions from the GSS

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EXERCISE 9 .4

Using Structured Interview Questions from the GSS

The GSS, conducted by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC), uses astructured interview schedule. The GSS was administered annually from1972 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 asindicators. The variables included on past surveys cover a wide range ofbehaviors, among them drinking behavior, membership in voluntaryassociations and the practice of religion, and numerous attitudes, suchas 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 between1972 and 2008, which is available at http://sda.berkeley.edu/archive.htmand 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 theyare valid indicators for the variables? Are the questions clear and easyto understand? What do you think of the answer categories?

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