Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing
The Center for Urban and Public Affairs (CUPA) maintains a 21-station
Sawtooth WinCATI (Windows Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing) Survey
Research Lab. The CATI system increases the efficiency and accuracy of survey
data collection by allowing survey interviewers to ask survey questions and
probe for complete responses while not having to focus on skip patterns, thus
eliminating one source of interviewer error.
On close-ended (quantitative) questions, all acceptable survey responses are
programmed into the survey software, and only those acceptable responses can be
selected by the interviewer. Open-ended (qualitative) questions are recorded
verbatim into the survey software, and are presented as such to clients so that
an accurate statement of respondent views is presented.
The WINCATI system maintains a database of survey telephone numbers and
streamlines the process of sampling, scheduling call-backs and recording the
outcome of each call attempt. The system reduces interviewer error to the
greatest extent possible in order to provide the highest quality data to our
CUPA offers a variety of sampling options to fit
the needs of your project. Based upon your study needs and objectives, the
following options are available:
Random Digit Dial (RDD) Samples: In an RDD sample, a computer generates telephone numbers based upon the geography of the target sample. These samples are truly random, in that respondents do not need to have a listed telephone number to be selected.
Listed Samples: CUPA
subscribes to several databases, including the Harris Selectory and
residential telephone databases that allow us to create listed samples based upon survey geographies. While this method excludes individuals without a listed telephone number, it is often the ideal (or only) method for reaching some segments of a population. CUPA staff and database managers can discuss whether this option is right for you.
Targeted Samples: Does your organization maintain a database of clients that you would like to contact? CUPA can work with you!
Cell Phone Samples: Increasingly, the American population is transitioning from a land-line only population to a mixed land-line and cell phone population. It is estimated that approximately 20 percent of American households today do not have a landline telephone, and these households often share demographic characteristics. CUPA staff can discuss with you how cell phone samples can be included in your sample (when possible) to ensure the most accurate snapshot of your population possible.
At project start-up, CUPA staff
will meet with clients to determine the goal of their research project. At this
initial start-up meeting, CUPA will present the best method for conducting the
research, appropriate sampling designs, and will detail any similar survey
instruments that are used elsewhere for comparison purposes.
The survey development process
is designed to allow the client to have as much or as little input into the
questionnaire design as they desire. CUPA staff will develop the survey
instrument and share the instrument with the client to ensure that all
appropriate topics are included. In situations where the client suggests
questions, CUPA staff will review/reword these questions to ensure that they are
being asked in a way which is scientific, not leading or biased. CUPA will NEVER
administer a survey in which questions are biased or attempting to solicit a
If you are interested in learning more about the telephone
survey capabilities of the Center for Urban and Public Affairs, please contact
at (937) 775-2941. Please browse the links on the right side of this page to
learn more about specific surveys conducted by CUPA.