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South LA Survey Basics: The Process of Data Collection and the Demographics of Survey Respondents

Many of the findings we share here are based on a recent survey of local residents from the Greater Crenshaw and South Figueroa Corridor areas of South LA. We would like to tell you more about the process of data collection and analysis. This section provides information about the conducting of the survey, and about the demographic composition of our respondents.

Survey Details

In the spring of 2009, two identical surveys were administered by the Metamorphosis Project.The first was a survey of 611 residents of the Greater Crenshaw area. The second was a survey of 250 residents of the South Figueroa Corridor area.

After analyzing key components of the survey, the research team determined that the results were sufficiently similar so that we could combine the two into a larger South LA dataset (consisting of 861 respondents), in addition to analyzing the separate surveys. This provides a more robust sample which allows for more accurate statistical analysis.

Survey interviews were conducted either in English or in Spanish, according to the preference of the respondent. In total, 69% of the interviews were conducted in English, 31% in Spanish.

The survey lasted approximately 45 minutes. In addition to getting demographic information, questions focused on three main topics:

  -   Residents’ communication patterns and storytelling networks

  -   Community health, including measures related to disease prevention,   health status and access to health resources.

  -   Community engagement, collective efficacy and civic participation.

Survey Demographics

 As you might have noticed, the demographics of our survey do not necessarily match the demographics of the South LA community at large. Today in South LA, Latinos account for upwards of two-thirds of the population. However, we intentionally oversample for African Americans, such that our respondents were approximately 50% African American and 50% Latino.

This is done because having an even number of these two groups allows for advanced statistical comparative analysis to be conducted.

Our survey respondents tend to be older and have a higher education level than the actual demographics of the community. Traditionally in telephone survey research, these groups are more likely to complete a questionnaire, and this was true in our case.

In addition, older residents are more likely to retain a land-line and are thus able to be reached more often in this procedure.

For more information on our survey demographics and data collection, please feel free to contact us.

Return to the findings page.

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