Ecological Momentary Assessment in Survey Research

  • Arthur A. StoneEmail author


The survey interview context typically occurs when respondents are at home. However, much of social life occurs outside of the home, meaning that there may be limits on the ecological validity of self-reports of things like experiences or emotional states throughout the day if these things are only reported when the respondent is at home and a substantial amount of time has passed since the focal time period. A suite of methods broadly classified as “ecological momentary assessment” or “experience sampling” are targeted at addressing this shortcoming of traditional interview methods. This chapter reviews these methods and highlights use cases where they may be particularly useful for researchers to consider.

References and Further Reading

  1. Bradburn, N. M., Rips, L. J., & Shevell, S. (1987). Answering Autobiographical Questions: the Impact of Memory and Inference on Surveys. Science, 236(4798), 157–161. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Larson, R. (1987). Validity and Reliability of the Experience-Sampling Method. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 175(9), 526.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Kahneman, D., Krueger, A. B., Schkade, D. A., Schwarz, N., & Stone, A. A. (2004). A Survey Method for Characterizing Daily Life Experience: The Day Reconstruction Method. Science, 306(5702), 1776–1780. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Shiffman, S. S., Stone, A. A., & Hufford, M. R. (2008). Ecological Momentary Assessment. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 4(1), 1–32. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Stone, A. A., & Shiffman, S. S. (1994). Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) in behavorial medicine. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 16(3), 199–202.Google Scholar
  6. Stone, A. A., Kessler, R. C., & Haythomthwatte, J. A. (2006a). Measuring Daily Events and Experiences: Decisions for the Researcher. Journal of Personality, 59(3), 575–607. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Stone, A. A., Schwartz, J. E., Schwarz, N., Schkade, D. A., Krueger, A. B., & Kahneman, D. (2006b). A Population Approach to the Study of Emotion: Diurnal Rhythms of a Working Day Examined with the Day Reconstruction Method. Emotion, 6(1), 139–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Dornsife Center for Self-Report ScienceUniversity of Southern CaliforniaCaliforniaUSA

Personalised recommendations