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ERIC Number: ED372093
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
Pages: 12
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Effects of Cover Letter Appeal and Nonmonetary Incentives on University Professors' Response to a Mail Survey.
Miller, Margaret M.
Educational researchers find mail questionnaires a convenient and relatively inexpensive way to conduct a survey, but response rate remains a crucial issue. This research examines the effects of two manipulated variables, the appeal of the introductory letter and a nonmonetary incentive, on survey response rate. Gender was also used as an explanatory variable. Subjects were full-time professors. The instrument addressed faculty attitudes about the importance of scholarly activities. The nonmonetary incentive was a decaffeinated coffee bag. Cover letter appeal was more personal in the experimental letter than in the control letter. Of the 950 deliverable surveys, 422 subjects responded to the initial mailing, with 552 subjects eventually responding after 2 followup postcard reminders. The hypothesis that nonmonetary incentives increase response rate was supported; incentives increased the initial response rate slightly, at 8.8% for those receiving the coffee. There was no significant effect of the cover letter appeal or of gender. Benefits of the small increase in initial response must be weighed against the increased cost of conducting the survey. Two tables present survey findings. (Contains 17 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A