Pilot Surveys.Pilot surveys conducted under this clearance will generally be methodological studies of 500 cases or less, but will always employ statistically representative samples. The pilot surveys will replicate all components of the methodological design, sampling procedures (where possible) and questionnaires of the full scale survey. Pilots will normally be utilized whenEIA undertakes a complete redesign of a particular data collection methodology or when EIA undertakes data collection in new areas, such as greenhouse gases or alternative fueled motor vehicle transportation system studies.
Respondent Debriefings.Respondent debriefings conducted under this clearance will generally be methodological studies of 500 cases or less, involving either purposive or statistically representative samples. The debriefing form is administered after a respondent completes a questionnaire either in paper form, electronically, or through in-person interviews. The debriefings contain questions that probe to determine how respondents interpret the questions and whether they have problems in completing the survey/questionnaire. Respondent debriefings also are useful in determining potential issues with data quality and in determining a more accurate respondent burden measure. This structured approach to debriefing enables both quantitative and qualitative analyses of data when administered to a statistically representative sample and allows EIA to improve its understanding of variance for the items in the questionnaire.
Cognitive Interviews.Cognitive interviews are typically one-on-one interviews in which the respondent is usually asked to “think aloud” or is asked “retrospective questions” as he or she answers survey questions, reads survey materials, or completes other activities as part of a survey process. A number of different techniques may be involved, including asking respondents to paraphrase questions, asking respondents probing questions to determine how they come up with their answers, and so on. The objective is to identify problems of ambiguity or misunderstanding, or other difficulties respondents have answering questions, and reduce measurement error in a survey.
Usability Interviews.Usability interviews are similar to cognitive interviews in which a respondent is typically asked to “think aloud” or asked “retrospective questions” as he or she reviews an electronic questionnaire, Web site and/or associated materials. The object of a usability interview is to make sure that electronic questionnaires, Web sites and other associated materials are user-friendly, allowing respondents to easily and intuitively navigate the electronic item and find the information that they seek.
Focus Groups.Focus groups involve group sessions guided by a moderator who follows a topic guide containing questions or topics focused on a particular issue, rather than adhering to a standardized questionnaire. Focus groups are useful for identifying and exploring issues with populations of interest, e.g., from a specific group of stakeholders.
(5)Annual Estimated Number of Respondents:1,000;
(6)Annual Estimated Number of Total Responses:1,000;
(7)Annual Estimated Number of Burden Hours:1,000;
(8)Annual Estimated Reporting and Recordkeeping Cost Burden:There are no costs associated with these survey methods other than the burden hours.
Section 13(b) of the Federal Energy Administration Act of 1974, Pub. L. 93-275, codified at 15 U.S.C. 772(b).
Issued in Washington, DC, on March 6, 2012.
Director, Office of Survey Development and Statistical Integration, U. S. Energy Information Administration.