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1504.0 - Methodological News, Dec 2007  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 18/12/2007   
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New Section on Data Collection Methodology (DCM)

The new Data Collection Methodology (DCM) section in the Statistical Services Branch (SSB) was announced on 20 August 2007. This new section combined the Survey Research and Effectiveness Unit (SREU) Questionnaire Design Team (QDT) staff with staff from the Forms Consultancy Group (FCG) into a single unit.

DCM provides expert advice, assistance and training on questionnaire design and evaluation methods, and on other interaction with respondents. As part of this support and leadership role, DCM also conducts literature reviews and experimental and observational research, maintains ABS research infrastructure, and maintains the Forms Design Standards and Evaluation Manuals.

Having completed the merge, DCM has a busy and exciting work program for the year ahead. Some highlights from this program include:

  • business survey support, including usability testing of Blaise CATIs for several collections;
  • household survey support, including advice on the collection strategy for the 2011 Census, non-response research and assistance in the development and testing of CAI instruments for household surveys;
  • standards and infrastructure support including redevelopment of Standard Question Wording (SQW) and revision of Population Standards;
  • research supporting the Multi-Modal Data Collection project, including Email Letter Standards, Web Form Standards, Interactive Voice Response implementation and a Mode Suitability Framework;
  • research for additional chapters for the Forms Development and Evaluation Manual, including chapters on Behaviour Coding and Response and Error Analysis; and
  • increasing the visibility and accessibility of the Forms Design Standards and Evaluation Manuals by publishing them to the ABS website.

For more information on the DCM work program, please contact either Kettie Hewett on (02) 6252 7295 for business surveys or Emma Farrell on (02) 6252 7316 for household surveys.

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