ASSESSING BIAS IN SURVEYS OF SYMPTOMS ATTRIBUTED TO NOISE

The authors explore two sources of possible error affecting the assessment of symptoms which are part of annoyance reactions, and which they propose to call "symptomatic annoyance" . The respondent's awareness that a survey has to do with noise problems does not seem to affect the answers to a health questionnaire. The wording of specific questions aimed at eliciting symptoms has a marked effect on the answers. Questions which ask whether aircraft noise made the respondent feel tension/headaches/nervousness, etc. elicit a higher proportion of positive answers in high noise than questions that ask in a more neutral manner if the respondent had suffered the same symptoms. The authors put foward that with the use of a misclassification table -- a cross-tabulation of both questions -- reliable symptoms attributed to noise can be identified, thus reducing the amount of error introduced by "noise-worded" questions usually employed in field interviews. The implications of the findings and, in particular, the relationship between annoyance and mental health are discussed.

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    Academic Press Incorporated

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  • Authors:
    • Barker, S M
    • Tarnopolsky, A
  • Publication Date: 1978-8-8

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00194693
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Engineering Index
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 13 1979 12:00AM