Cover: Effects of acquiescent response set on patient satisfaction ratings

Effects of acquiescent response set on patient satisfaction ratings

Published 1977

by John E. Ware

Purchase Print Copy

 Format Price
Add to Cart Paperback26 pages $20.00

Summarizes results of studies of bias in patient satisfaction questionnaires due to acquiescent response set (ARS), a tendency to agree with statements regardless of content. Three surveys (N=1280) were fielded using the Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire in which 40 to 60 percent of respondents manifested some degree of ARS and 2 to 10 percent demonstrated noteworthy ARS tendencies. ARS accounted for significant upward bias in satisfaction scores from favorably worded items and significant downward bias from unfavorably worded items. Biases were greatest for groups reporting lower educational attainment or less income. An example shows that mean satisfaction scores for groups differing in education were so biased by ARS that differences in satisfaction were overestimated by favorably worded items and missed by unfavorably worded items. Balanced satisfaction scales, (those containing both favorably and unfavorably worded items), were not correlated or correlated only slightly with ARS; therefore group means for balanced scales were not biased or biased only slightly.

This report is part of the RAND paper series. The paper was a product of RAND from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.