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DOI

https://doi.org/10.7275/e482-n724

Abstract

When respondents answer paper-and-pencil (PP) questionnaires, they sometimes modify their responses to correspond to previously answered items. As a result, this response bias might artificially inflate the reliability of PP questionnaires. We compared the internal consistency of PP questionnaires to computerized questionnaires that presented a different number of items on a computer screen simultaneously. Study 1 showed that a PP questionnaire's internal consistency was higher than that of the same questionnaire presented on a computer screen with one, two or four questions per screen. Study 2 replicated these findings to show that internal consistency was also relatively high when all questions were shown on one screen. This suggests that the differences found in Study 1 were not due to the difference in presentation medium. Thus, this paper suggests that reliability measures of PP questionnaires might be inflated because of a response bias resulting from participants cross-checking their answers against ones given to previous questions. Accessed 17,831 times on https://pareonline.net from June 20, 2011 to December 31, 2019. For downloads from January 1, 2020 forward, please click on the PlumX Metrics link to the right.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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