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PATH Questionnaire Reliability and Validity Study

Principal Investigator: Roger Tourangeau

Funding Mechanism: National Institutes of Health – Grant

ID number: 1R01DA040736-01A1

Award Date: 9/1/2016

Institution: Westat


The Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study is a national longitudinal study of tobacco use and health that is following approximately 46,000 U.S. household residents ages 12 and older. The goal of this study is to evaluate the reliability and validity of the PATH Study adult and youth Round Four assessment instruments. Researchers will interview 875 PATH Study respondents who represent a subsample of the PATH Study sample areas. Respondents will be interviewed twice, with the re-interview completed within 10-17 days after the initial interview. For a subset of the items where discrepancies are found, the questionnaire will include probes designed to shed light on the nature of the discrepancy. At the end of the re-interview, the interviewer will photograph the products used by the participant so that they can be compared to the brands self-reported in the questionnaire. To assess the validity of answers to key items on tobacco use, researchers will analyze saliva specimens for biomarkers of exposure. Researchers will conduct additional analyses to identify person-level variables associated with different levels of reliability, identify question characteristics that affect answer reliability, and examine different methods for estimating reliability. Study findings will be incorporated in new tools to predict the reliability of study questions in order to advance measurement practices in future studies.