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Abstract
Journal of Official Statistics, Vol.20, No.2, 2004. pp. 379391

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How Good is Good? Comparing Numerical Ratings of Response Options for Two Versions of the Self-Assessed Health Status Question

Abstract:
Eight sets of disability questions were tested to assess their relative value for measuring impairments, functioning, and behavior. Two versions of a self-assessed health status question (SAHS) appeared among the eight sets. While both had 5-point response option scales containing “Good” and “Very good”, the rank order differed within the scales. A small experiment was conducted to explore whether “Good” and “Very good” meant the same thing to respondents when they were presented within the two different response option scales. Participants wrote each response option set on two Visual Analog Scales at different times. “Good” received a lower numerical rating (5.4 on a scale from 1 to 10) when it was the third option after “Excellent” and “Very good” than when it was the second option (7.3) after “Very good.” Findings are presented in the context of past research on SAHS questions and rating scales. The results are relevant for making cross-survey comparisons.

Keywords:
Cognitive testing, disability measures

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