The HRS investigators welcome suggestions for experimental modules from the research community for the 2024 wave of HRS. Ideas for modules should be sent to the committee on experimental modules at the address below. You may provide specific survey questions if you wish, though this is not necessary; just the basic analytic idea, with some indications of the variables that the module should try to measure, is sufficient. It is also helpful to include references to recent publications on the topic, relevant studies, or for specific survey instruments. Priority will be given to modules that enhance HRS content to provide the greatest overall benefit to the research community. All modules must conform to the same overall design limitations (described below). The HRS investigators will make the final decision about which modules to include in each wave of interviews.
Experimental modules are administered to randomly-selected sub-samples of HRS self-respondents, after the main interview is completed, with a strict limit of two to three minutes in average length. Keep in mind that experimental module questions come at the end of a very long interview, so keeping them as simple and straightforward as possible increases the chances of your proposal’s selection. Each respondent is randomly assigned to only one module. Respondents can refuse to participate in any module before assignment, and can refuse to answer questions in the module to which they are randomly assigned. The sample size for each module depends on the number of modules included in the wave and the number of self-respondents in that wave. In general, though, the number of respondents who complete each module ranges between 1,400 and 1,800.
Proposed modules must be appropriate for telephone, face-to-face and web modes and designed for the entire HRS sample. Modules that target specific groups by age, sex, health status, or any other variable do not fit well within this structure. If one module were asked of all 51-56 year olds, for example, then the other modules would not represent that age group, with negative consequences for all of them. It is possible, however, to construct different sequences of questions for different groups within a module. For example, a module about cancer knowledge could ask women about breast cancer and men about prostate cancer. Also note that because individual respondents are assigned randomly, it is not possible to require both members of a couple in coupled households to answer the same module.
The timetable for module development for the 2024 interview wave is as follows:
• January 13, 2023: Proposals due
• February 20, 2023: Final selection by HRS co-investigators
• May 1, 2023: Final question text and specifications due
• July 2025: Estimated preliminary release of data from HRS 2024
Proposals for modules should be sent to: email@example.com. Please include the phrase "experimental module" as the first word in your subject heading. Please direct any questions about the process or your application to firstname.lastname@example.org as well.