NLSY79 Appendix 14: Instrument Rosters

National Longitudinal Survey of Youth - 1979 Cohort

NLSY79 Appendix 14: Instrument Rosters

Instrument Rosters

In the paper and pencil (PAPI) questionnaires administered from 1979-1992, basic information about specific types of subjects (household members, children, etc.) was often recorded in a table or grid structure, and subsequently stored in a similar format. With computer assisted personal interviewing (CAPI), expanded electronic versions of these grids and tables were implemented.

During the course of the survey, a number of these matrices of data, or "rosters," are constructed. Rosters contain one or more pieces of information on a given subject. They are often presented to the interviewers as lists of information that are used to verify information, or from which one of the subjects on the roster is chosen as the answer to a survey question. For example, the EMPLOYER roster (a list of employers for whom the employer has worked since the date of last interview), is presented to the interviewer at the end of the ON JOBS) module of the survey, so that s/he can verify that the list of employers, and some specific information associated with each employer is accurate.

Many of the rosters used during the administration of the survey are not presented as contiguous blocks of data in the public release data. Often in these cases, the relevant information contained in these rosters is present in variables scattered throughout the public data. For instance, although the many variables found on the EMPLOYER roster are not present as a contiguous block, or a roster per se, much of the information contained in the roster is present in other variables in the Employer Supplements.

Occasionally, sets of created variables may also be loaded into a roster structure. The primary example of a roster constructed outside of a running survey is the EMPLOYER_HISTORY roster, which contains over 32,500 variables in the current public release data.

A number of commonly used rosters (or comparable grid items from the 1979-1992 PAPI questionnaires) are listed below, along with the formats of question names for those roster items, relevant areas of interest and helpful search criteria. Work continues on imposing more consistency on question names and substantive areas of interest, so users can expect to see improvements with each successive release. Changes will be reflected in accompanying documentation.

For further discussion of rosters, see NLSY79 Appendix 13.

Household Roster

The HHI_FINAL roster in the 1993-present electronic questionnaires replaced the Household Enumeration in the PAPI instruments from 1979-1992.

  • Relevant Areas of Interest = HOUSEHOLD RECORD
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1979-1992 = HHI[FIELDNAME]
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1993-Present = HHI_FINAL_[FIELDNAME]

Employer Roster

The EMPLOYER roster did not exist in a cohesive fashion prior to 1993. However, most of the elements on this roster are included in a systematic fashion in the Employer Supplements sections for each survey year.

  • Areas of Interest include WORK HISTORY - MAIN - JOB INFORMATION [YEAR] (through 2012); JOB INFORMATION; EARNINGS; INDUSTRY & OCCUPATION; PERIODS NOT WORKING WITHIN JOB TENURE
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1979-present = EMPLOYER_[FIELDNAME]

Biological Child Roster

The CHILD/BIOCHILD rosters in 1993-present replace the paper and pencil Biological Children's Record Form in the PAPI instruments from 1979-1992.

  • Relevant Areas of Interest = CHILD RECORD FORM/BIOLOGICAL
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1979-1996 = BIO[FIELDNAME]
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1998-Present = BIOCHILD4_[FIELDNAME]

Users should note that variables in the FERTILITY AND RELATIONSHIP HISTORY/CREATED area of interest, survey year XRND, provide a cumulative and extensively reviewed record of biological children. These variables are updated with each survey round and contain the latest information available for gender, birthdate, death date (if applicable) and latest residential status for each biological child.

Non-biological Child Roster

The NBIOCHILD rosters in 1994-present replace the paper and pencil Non-biological Children's Record Form in the PAPI instruments from 1979-1992.

  • Relevant Areas of Interest = CHILD RECORD FORM/NONBIOLOGICAL
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1979-1996 = NBIO[FIELDNAME]
  • Roster Names for Survey Years 1998-Present = NBIOCHILD4_[FIELDNAME]