Journal of Official Statistics, Vol.17, No.2, 2001. pp. 321335

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Item Nonresponse in Questionnaire Research With Children

This study investigates the effect of item and person characteristics on item nonresponse, for written questionnaires used with school children. Secondary analyses were done on questionnaire data collected in five distinct studies. To analyze the data, logistic multilevel analysis was used with the items at the lowest and the children at the highest level. Item nonresponse turns out to be relatively rare. Item nonresponse can be predicted by some of the item and person characteristics in our study. However, the predicted response differences are small. There are interactions between item and person characteristics, especially with the number of years of education, which is used as a proxy indicator for cognitive skill. Young children do not perform as well as children with more years of education, by producing more item nonresponse, but their performance is still acceptable.

Partial nonresponse; special population; item characteristics; respondent characteristics.

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