Survey Methods and Practices

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This publication shows readers how to design and conduct a census or sample survey. It explains basic survey concepts and provides information on how to create efficient and high quality surveys. It is aimed at those involved in planning, conducting or managing a survey and at students of survey design courses.

This book contains the following information:

  • how to plan and manage a survey;
  • how to formulate the survey objectives and design a questionnaire;
  • things to consider when determining a sample design (choosing between a sample or a census, defining the survey population, choosing a survey frame, identifying possible sources of survey error);
  • choosing a method of collection (self-enumeration, personal interviews or telephone interviews; computer-assisted versus paper-based questionnaires);
  • organizing and conducting data collection operations;
  • determining the sample size, allocating the sample across strata and selecting the sample;
  • methods of point estimation and variance estimation, and data analysis;
  • the use of administrative data, particularly during the design and estimation phases
  • how to process the data (which consists of all data handling activities between collection and estimation) and use quality control and quality assurance measures to minimize and control errors during various survey steps; and
  • disclosure control and data dissemination.

This publication also includes a case study that illustrates the steps in developing a household survey, using the methods and principles presented in the book.

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