4150.0 - Time Use Survey: User Guide, 2006  
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Contents >> Survey Methodology >> DATA COLLECTION INSTRUMENTS


Computer Assisted Interview

The interview was designed to be administered using standard ABS procedures for conducting interviewer surveys with a responsible adult within the household and to obtain valid and reliable results. The interview questionnaire concentrated on demographic and socio-economic information about each household person in on scope to identify population groups. To ensure consistency of approach, interviewers were instructed to ask the interview questions exactly as worded in the questionnaire. The interview included questions relating to ethnicity, education, labour force status, income, child care, age and disability, household items and household use of Internet technology.


The diary was designed to collect information about a respondent's activities, their nature, timing and duration. All persons in on scope aged 15 years and over for selected households were asked to complete a diary for two consecutive specified days, reporting their activities in their own words. Instructions and two completed sample pages at the beginning of the diary gave respondents an idea of the type of information and level of detail required.

The diary was divided into two separate days, showing hours with fixed intervals of five minutes covering 24 hours from 12 am. Respondents were instructed to use the five minute markings to indicate starting times, and record an arrow to the finish time for each activity. Activities were later coded by office staff using a detailed classification. Diaries were either collected by the interviewer on a return visit or they could be mailed back to the regional offices in an envelope that was provided by interviewers. Five columns with question headings organised responses into main and simultaneous activities, for whom the activity was done, where the activity took place and who else was there.

A paper version of the Computer Assisted Interview used in the survey, and a copy of the diaries placed with respondents can be downloaded as separate pdf files from the ABS website. See Appendix 3 for details.

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