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=== Example of Framing Related to Word Choice  ===
 
=== Example of Framing Related to Word Choice  ===
In the fall of 2008, the United States Congress was considering The Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the Bush administration's plan to purchase assets and equity from financial institutions in hopes of stabilizing the financial industry.  It was signed into law on October 3, 2008.  In September 2008, three separate national surveys (Pew, LA Times/Bloomberg, and ABC News/Washington Post) of the United States sought to gauge public opinion regarding this program.  Each survey used different language to describe the program.
 
  
Pew wording: "As you may know, the government is potentially investing billions to try and keep financial institutions and markets secure. Do you think this is the right thing or the wrong thing for the government to be doing?"
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In the fall of 2008, the United States Congress was considering The Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the Bush administration's plan to purchase assets and equity from financial institutions in hopes of stabilizing the financial industry. It was signed into law on October 3, 2008. In September 2008, three separate national surveys (Pew, LA Times/Bloomberg, and ABC News/Washington Post) of the United States sought to gauge public opinion regarding this program. Each survey used different language to describe the program.
  
Pew results: Right 57%, Wrong 30%
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<u>Pew wording</u>: "As you may know, the government is potentially investing billions to try and keep financial institutions and markets secure. Do you think this is the right thing or the wrong thing for the government to be doing?"
  
LA Times/Bloomberg wording: "Do you think the government should use taxpayers’ dollars to rescue ailing private financial firms whose collapse could have adverse effects on the economy and market, or is it not the government’s responsibility to bail out private companies with taxpayers’ dollars?"
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Pew results: Right 57%, Wrong 30%
  
LA Times/Bloomberg results: Should 31%, Should not 55%
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<u>LA Times/Bloomberg wording</u>: "Do you think the government should use taxpayers’ dollars to rescue ailing private financial firms whose collapse could have adverse effects on the economy and market, or is it not the government’s responsibility to bail out private companies with taxpayers’ dollars?"
  
ABC News/Washington Post wording: "Do you approve or disapprove of the steps the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department have taken to try to deal with the current situation involving the stock market and major financial institutions?"
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LA Times/Bloomberg results: Should 31%, Should not 55%
  
ABC News/Washington Post results: Approve 44%, Disapprove 42%
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<u>ABC News/Washington Post wording</u>: "Do you approve or disapprove of the steps the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department have taken to try to deal with the current situation involving the stock market and major financial institutions?"
  
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ABC News/Washington Post results: Approve 44%, Disapprove 42%
  
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 +
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{| width="400" border="1" align="center" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1"
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|+ Impact of Word Choice on Survey Results
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|-
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| '''Poll'''
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| '''Wording'''
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| '''Favor Program'''
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| '''Do Not Favor Program'''
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|-
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| Pew
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| "invest"
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| 57%
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| 30%
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|-
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| LAT/Bloomberg
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| "bailout"
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| 31%
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| 55%
 +
|-
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| ABC News/Post
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| "steps"
 +
| 44%
 +
| 42%
 +
|}
 +
 +
 +
 +
<br>
  
 
== Priming  ==
 
== Priming  ==

Revision as of 10:16, 8 July 2011



Objectives

Introduction

Heading

Sub-heading

Example

Sub-heading

Example

Response Effects

Response Effects refer to the phenomenon where something about the survey process impacts the responses given by survey respondents. While it is impossible to eliminate all response effects, it is possible to reduce or eliminate the structural causes of many response effects (that is, when the structure of the survey, such as the order of questions or alternatives, the wording of questions, etc. is the cause) and minimize the impact of others (for example, response effects caused by the race or sex of interviewer can be minimized by randomization in the sampling process)

Framing

Framing refers to the use of language, words, or phrases which are likely to lead survey respondents to give certain types of answers.

Example of Framing

In one poll of adults 18 and older in York County, SC conducted in 2003, two versions of one question were included to demonstrate the phenomenon of framing. Respondents were randomly selected to receive one of the versions. In a series of questions where respondents were asked to Strongly Agree, Agree, Neither Agree nor Disagree, Disagree, or Strongly Disagree with a statement, half of the respondents received Version A of one statement while half received Version B.

Version A: "I don't mind if the government keeps tabs on regular people."

Results:
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Note: The majority of respondents value their privacy and do not approve of the government keeping tabs on them.


Version B: "I don't mind if the government keeps tabs on regular people if it helps keep us safer from terrorism."


Results:
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Note: Now, the majority of respondents appear to be willing to sacrifice their privacy for perceived safety.

Side by side comparison of Versions A and B:

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By creating a frame of "terrorism" for the question, respondents gave a different answer than they otherwise might. Whether you attribute the cause to placing terrorism at the "top of the head" of the respondent<ref>Template:Cite bookfckLR</ref> or causing them to consult a different core predisposition<ref>Template:Cite bookfckLR</ref>, the result of altering their response is the same.

Example of Framing Related to Word Choice

In the fall of 2008, the United States Congress was considering The Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the Bush administration's plan to purchase assets and equity from financial institutions in hopes of stabilizing the financial industry. It was signed into law on October 3, 2008. In September 2008, three separate national surveys (Pew, LA Times/Bloomberg, and ABC News/Washington Post) of the United States sought to gauge public opinion regarding this program. Each survey used different language to describe the program.

Pew wording: "As you may know, the government is potentially investing billions to try and keep financial institutions and markets secure. Do you think this is the right thing or the wrong thing for the government to be doing?"

Pew results: Right 57%, Wrong 30%

LA Times/Bloomberg wording: "Do you think the government should use taxpayers’ dollars to rescue ailing private financial firms whose collapse could have adverse effects on the economy and market, or is it not the government’s responsibility to bail out private companies with taxpayers’ dollars?"

LA Times/Bloomberg results: Should 31%, Should not 55%

ABC News/Washington Post wording: "Do you approve or disapprove of the steps the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department have taken to try to deal with the current situation involving the stock market and major financial institutions?"

ABC News/Washington Post results: Approve 44%, Disapprove 42%


Impact of Word Choice on Survey Results
Poll Wording Favor Program Do Not Favor Program
Pew "invest" 57% 30%
LAT/Bloomberg "bailout" 31% 55%
ABC News/Post "steps" 44% 42%



Priming

Michael Parkin defines priming as the "psychological process in which exposure to a stimulus activates a concept in memory that is then given increased weight in subsequent judgment tasks. Priming works by making the activated concept accessible so that it can be readily used in evaluating related objects."<ref>Template:Cite bookfckLR</ref>

Example of Priming

In surveys, Priming response effects are often the result of question order. Imagine a survey that seeks to measure individuals' concerns about the economy. If respondents are asked what they consider to be the most important problem facing their country or state after they have been asked a series of questions regarding economic concerns, they may be more likely to cite the economy at the "most important problem."

Priming due to question order may also change the criteria used for judgement or evaluation. Asking a series of questions about the economy before asking respondents to evaluate the U.S. president may result in higher evaluations than might otherwise be expected in economic good times and lower than expected evaluations in an economic downturn. Similarly, asking for a presidential evaluation after a series of questions regarding foreign military engagements may result in the individual subconsciously creating their evaluation of the president based on their attitudes regarding foreign policy rather than any domestic issue.

In fact, for these reasons, most political surveys ask questions regarding approval or evaluation for candidates or elected officials, as well as questions regarding the most important problem or issue facing the country or state, somewhere near the beginning of the survey. Another example would be asking questions regarding religious beliefs and church attendance prior to asking questions about issues that are often religiously charged, such as abortion of same sex marriage.

Heading

Sub-heading

Conclusion

References

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Discussion questions

Problems

Glossary

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