KEY FEATURES: Introduces students to developing research questions and shows their importance in driving research design. Rarely taught topics, such as how to enter and clean data, offer students information missed in both research methods and statistics courses. Shows how to write up survey results for academic, business and nonprofit reports to alleviate the confusion students feel about how to write up findings. Rigorous treatment of sampling focuses on many sampling issues from probability theory to weighting. Offers the process of actually conducting a survey with advice on administering surveys, incentives, and improving response rates.

What Is a Codebook, and Why Is It Important?

Erin Ruel

A codebook is a separate document from the dataset, often in Word or Excel, that contains critical information for data users. It is very important. First of all, it matches the survey questions to the variable names listed in the dataset. It provides descriptions of what all the variables represent. It also provides secondary information such as the full text of the questionnaire items, variable labels, values, and matching value labels. Most computer-assisted survey programs will automatically generate a codebook, but if not, they are simple to create. An example of a codebook is found in Table 66.1 below. The first column tells us where to find the variable in the dataset. Column 2 ...

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