The Science of Self-Report: Implications for Research and Practice

The Science of Self-Report: Implications for Research and Practice

The Science of Self-Report: Implications for Research and Practice

The Science of Self-Report: Implications for Research and Practice

Synopsis

Rigorous methodological techniques have been developed in the last decade to improve the reliability and accuracy of self reports from research volunteers and patients about their pain, mood, substance abuse history, or dietary habits. This book presents cutting-edge research on optimal methods for obtaining self-reported information for use in the evaluation of scientific hypothesis, in therapeutic interventions, and in the development of prognostic indicators.

ALTERNATE BLURB:
Self-reports constitute critically important data for research and practice in many fields. As the chapters in this volume document, psychological and social processes influence the storage and recall of self-report information. There are conditions under which self-reports should be readily accepted by the clinician or researcher, and other conditions where healthy scepticism is required. The chapters demonstrate methods for improving the accuracy of self-reports, ranging from fine-tuning interviews and questionnaires to employing emerging technologies to collect data in ways that minimize bias and encourage accurate reporting.

Representing a diverse group of disciplines including sociology, law, psychology, and medicine, the distinguished authors offer crucial food for thought to all those whose work depends on the accurate self-reports of others.

Excerpt

Peoples' reports about what they are feeling, what they are doing, what they recall happening in the past--that is, self-reported data--are essential to the health care profession and underlie many of our research endeavors. Clinicians ask their patients what their symptoms are, where they are, how long symptoms have been experienced, and under what conditions they are experienced. Researchers ask study participants similar questions, for example, about childhood experiences, use of illicit drugs or sexual practices, about recent or past stressful events, exposures to environmental toxins, appraisals of the quality of the work environment or marriage, family history, dietary intake, or adherence to medication protocols. All of this information, and much more, falls into the domain of self-report data.

This volume presents a set of chapters based on presentations given during a conference entitled The Science of Self-Report: Implications for Research and Practice, held in the Masur Auditorium at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland on November 7 and 8, 1996. the goal of the conference was to present recent findings about self-report. We start out with the position that it is naive to accept all self-reports as veridical. As the chapters in the volume document, psychological and social processes influence storage and recall of self-report information. They show that there are conditions under which self-reports should be readily accepted by the clinician or researcher and that there are other conditions where healthy skepticism is required. We show that there are methods for improving the accuracy of self-reports, ranging from fine-tuning our interviews and questionnaires to employing emerging technologies to collect data in ways that minimize bias and encourage accurate reporting.

It is clear that both the limitations of self-report data as well as the new methods for improving self-report need to be known by clinicians and scientists using such data. Yet, scientists who might think themselves immune to the issues should think twice. the success of the pharmacologist or the neuroscientist developing molecular therapies to fight cancer or of . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.