A comparison of open-ended and closed questions in the prediction of mental health

A comparison of open-ended and closed questions in the prediction of mental health The statistical benefit of adding open-ended questions to closed questions was evaluated in a survey of 643 participants. The construct of coping was chosen as the measurement domain. Open and closed questions were used to predict mental health a year later. Verbatim responses to open questions were reliably coded (ICC = 0.92), but they did not increase the statistical prediction of measures of mental health beyond the contribution of closed questions. Open-ended questions provided more in-depth information than closed questions, but at the cost of more missing data and less degrees of freedom. The benefit of using open-ended in addition to standard closed questions was thus practically nil, hence questioning the use of qualitative information gathering in surveys for the purpose of statistical prediction. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Quality & Quantity Springer Journals

A comparison of open-ended and closed questions in the prediction of mental health

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 by Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Subject
Social Sciences, general; Methodology of the Social Sciences; Social Sciences, general
ISSN
0033-5177
eISSN
1573-7845
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11135-011-9597-8
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The statistical benefit of adding open-ended questions to closed questions was evaluated in a survey of 643 participants. The construct of coping was chosen as the measurement domain. Open and closed questions were used to predict mental health a year later. Verbatim responses to open questions were reliably coded (ICC = 0.92), but they did not increase the statistical prediction of measures of mental health beyond the contribution of closed questions. Open-ended questions provided more in-depth information than closed questions, but at the cost of more missing data and less degrees of freedom. The benefit of using open-ended in addition to standard closed questions was thus practically nil, hence questioning the use of qualitative information gathering in surveys for the purpose of statistical prediction.

Journal

Quality & QuantitySpringer Journals

Published: Sep 6, 2011

References

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