Research in Higher Education

, Volume 44, Issue 4, pp 409–432 | Cite as

Assessing Response Rates and Nonresponse Bias in Web and Paper Surveys

  • Linda J. SaxEmail author
  • Shannon K. Gilmartin
  • Alyssa N. Bryant


Using data collected as part of the second pilot administration of Your First College Year (YFCY), a national survey of first-year college students, this study was designed to examine both response rates and nonresponse bias across four survey administration groups: paper-only, paper with web option, web-only with response incentive, and web-only without response incentive. Findings indicate that response rates vary by mode of administration. Moreover, predictors of response differed by administration group. Results are discussed in light of the recent surge of interest in online survey research.

nonresponse bias response rates online survey research college student surveys 


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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda J. Sax
    • 1
    Email author
  • Shannon K. Gilmartin
    • 2
  • Alyssa N. Bryant
    • 2
  1. 1.Higher Education Research InstituteUniversity of California, Los AngelesLos Angeles
  2. 2.Higher Education Research Institute, Graduate School of Education & Information StudiesUniversity of CaliforniaLos Angeles

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