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ERIC Number: EJ824392
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Dec
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0016-9013
Convenience Samples and Caregiving Research: How Generalizable Are the Findings?
Pruchno, Rachel A.; Brill, Jonathan E.; Shands, Yvonne; Gordon, Judith R.; Genderson, Maureen Wilson; Rose, Miriam; Cartwright, Francine
Gerontologist, v48 n6 p820-827 Dec 2008
Purpose: We contrast characteristics of respondents recruited using convenience strategies with those of respondents recruited by random digit dial (RDD) methods. We compare sample variances, means, and interrelationships among variables generated from the convenience and RDD samples. Design and Methods: Women aged 50 to 64 who work full time and provide care to a community-dwelling older person were recruited using either RDD (N = 55) or convenience methods (N = 87). Telephone interviews were conducted using reliable, valid measures of demographics, characteristics of the care recipient, help provided to the care recipient, evaluations of caregiver-care recipient relationship, and outcomes common to caregiving research. Results: Convenience and RDD samples had similar variances on 68.4% of the examined variables. We found significant mean differences for 63% of the variables examined. Bivariate correlations suggest that one would reach different conclusions using the convenience and RDD sample data sets. Implications: Researchers should use convenience samples cautiously, as they may have limited generalizability.
Gerontological Society of America. 1030 15th Street NW Suite 250, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-842-1275; Fax: 202-842-1150; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A