Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Miller et al. find benefits of Medicaid for pregnant mothers in 1980s carry over two generations

Starr's findings account for some of the 19% black-white gap in federal sentencing

Frey says suburbs are aging, cities draw millennials

More News


Bailey et al. find higher income among children whose parents had access to federal family planning programs in the 1960s and 70s

U-M's campus climate survey results discussed in CHE story

U-M honors James Jackson's groundbreaking work on how race impacts the health of black Americans

U-M is the only public and non-coastal university on Forbes' top-10 list for billionaire production

More Highlights

Next Brown Bag

Mon, Jan 22, 2018, noon: Narayan Sastry

The Life History Calendar: A Technique for Collecting Retrospecitve Data

Publication Abstract

Freedman, Deborah, Arland Thornton, Donald Camburn, Duane Alwin, and Linda Young-DeMarco. 1988. "The Life History Calendar: A Technique for Collecting Retrospecitve Data." Sociological Methodology, 18(1988): 37-68.

This paper details the authors' selection, design, and use of a life history calendar (LHC) to collect retrospective life course data. A sample of nine hundred 23-year-olds, originally interviewed in 1980, were asked about the incidence and timing of various life events in the nine years since their 15th birthday. The accuracy of the LHC retrospective data can be tested by comparing the 1980 reports about current activites with the 1985 LHC retrospective reports about those same activities during the 1980 interview month. The following aspects of the LHC are described: (a) the concept, uses, and advantages of the LHC, (b) the time units and domains used, (c) the mode of recording the responses and the decisions and problems involved, (d) interviewer training, and (e) coding. The following results attest to the accuracy of the LHC retrospective data: (a) only four of the calendars had missing data in any month; (b) the data obtained in 1980 about current work, school attendance, marriage, and children showed a remarkable correspondence to the retrospective 1985 LHC reports of these events; (c) the interviewers were positive about the LHC's ability to increase respondent recall.

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next