Term Definition
Data capture

The process of converting data (e.g., from questionnaires, audio/visual recordings, samples, etc.) to an electronic file.

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Synonyms - capture, captured,
Data dictionary
A document linking the survey instrument (questionnaire) with the dataset, or more abstract question or variable-level metadata including question identifiers (variable names and labels); response category identifiers (value labels), and data types (e.g., F2.0, specifying that the response is a two-digit integer with zero decimal places.
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Data Documentation Initiative (DDI)
An international effort to establish a standard for technical documentation describing social science data. A membership-based Alliance is developing the DDI specification, which is written in XML.
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De-identification
Separating personally identifiable information (PII) from the survey data to prevent a breach of confidentiality.
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Decentering

An approach to designing questions in two languages in which neither of the languages nor cultures involved is allowed to dominate. A Ping-Pong-like process of formulation and comparison between the two languages is used to develop versions in each language. Any language or cultural obstacles met with are resolved, often by removing or changing wording in one or both languages. The question formulation in both languages then moves on from that modification. Since the process removes culture-specific elements from both versions, decentered questions may be vague and not especially salient for either target population.

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Design effect
The effect of the complex survey design on sampling variance measured as the ratio of the sampling variance under the complex design to the sampling variance computed as a simple random sample of the same sample size.
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Differential item functioning (dif)

Item bias as a result of systematic differences in responses across cultures due to features of the item or measure itself, such as poor translation or ambiguous wording.

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Synonyms - differential item functioning
Diglossic linguistic contexts
Diglossic linguistic contexts exist in single language communities that use two or more markedly different varieties of a language or two different languages in different contexts. The variety used may be determined by whether the language is written or spoken in a given instance or by the relationships between participants in a discourse. Considerations such as age, gender, social status, and the topic under discussion may all contribute to the form chosen in any given instance.
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Direct cost
An expense that can be traced directly to (or identified with) a specific cost center or is directly attributable to a cost object such as a department, process, or product.
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Disclosure analysis and avoidance
The process of identifying and protecting the confidentiality of data. It involves limiting the amount of detailed information disseminated and/or masking data via noise addition, data swapping, generation of simulated or synthetic data, etc. For any proposed release of tabulations or microdata, the level of risk of disclosure should be evaluated.
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Disposition code

A code that indicates the result of a specific contact attempt or the outcome assigned to a sample element at the end of data collection (e.g., noncontact, refusal, ineligible, complete interview).

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Synonyms - disposition codes
Document management system
A document management system (DMS) is a computer system (or a set of computer programs) used to track and store electronic documents and/or images of paper documents. The term has some overlap with the concept of Content Management Systems. It is often viewed as a component of Enterprise Content Management Systems (ECM, see http://www.aiim.org/What-is-ECM-Enterprise-Content-Management.aspx) and related to Digital Asset Management, Document imaging, Workflow systems and Records Management systems.
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Double-barreled (questions)

Survey questions that inadvertently ask about two topics at once.

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Synonyms - double-barreled