Social and Behavioral Research and the Internet: Advances in Applied Methods and Research Strategies

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2010-10-28
  • Publisher: Routledge

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Reflecting the growing use of the Internet, this timely volume highlights the progress made by researchers in using Web-based surveys for data collection. Featuring contributions from the leading behavioral and social scientists in Europe and the United States, the book highlights their experiences with Internet research.„ It addresses practical issues such as data quality, how to reach difficult target groups, how to design a survey to maximize response, and ethical issues that need to be considered. Innovative applications such as the use of biomarkers and eye tracking techniques are also explored. Some chapters provide theory and best practice examples while others focus on current issues„ such as understanding Paradata.Some of the chapters reference the innovative LISS„panel of CentERdata collected from over 5,000 households. Some contributors applied„ innovative web-based research methods to this data and their findings are presented in the book. A website features the CentERdata's databank.Part 1 provides an overview of Internet survey research including its methodologies, strengths, challenges, and best practices. Innovative ways to minimize sources of error are provided along with a review of mixed-mode designs, tips on how to design a scientifically sound longitudinal panel and avoid sampling problems, and ethical requirements in web surveys. Part 2 focuses on advanced applications including the impact of visual design on the interpretability of survey questions, the impact survey usability has on respondents' answers, design features that increase the interaction with respondents, and how Internet surveys can be effectively used to study sensitive issues. Part 3 addresses data quality, sample selection, measurement and non-response error, and new applications for collecting and understanding online survey data. The issue of underrepresentation of certain groups in Internet research and the measures most effective at reducing it, are addressed.„ The importance of Paradata, which contains information about the data collection process is discussed, followed by innovative chapters on the use of eye-tracking techniques and on collecting biomarker data.An ideal supplement for graduate and/or upper level undergraduate courses on (internet) research methods and/or data collection taught in departments of psychology, sociology, marketing, economics, and business,„ this practical book also appeals to researchers and professionals in these fields who use the Internet for data collection.

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