The SAGE Handbook of Measurement

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Geoffrey Walford, Eric Tucker, Madhu Viswanathan
SAGE, Mar 23, 2010 - Social Science - 648 pages
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The Sage Handbook of Measurement is a unique methodological resource in which Walford, Viswanathan and Tucker draw together contributions from leading scholars in the social sciences, each of whom has played an important role in advancing the study of measurement over the past 25 years. Each of the contributors offers insights into particular measurement related challenges they have confronted and how they have addressed these.

Each chapter focuses on a different aspect of measurement, so that the handbook as a whole covers the full spectrum of core issues related to design, method and analysis within measurement studies. The book emphasises issues such as indicator generation and modification, the nature and conceptual meaning of measurement error, and the day-to-day processes involved in developing and using measures.

The Handbook covers the full range of disciplines where measurement studies are common: policy studies; education studies; health studies; and business studies.


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1Reflections on Social Measurement
SECTION I Methods for Data Collection
2 How to Get Valid Answers from Survey Questions
Design Principles and Innovations of a Quintessential American Social Indicator
4 Measurement as Cooperative Communication
5 Developing Observation Instruments and Arriving at Interrater Reliability for a Range of Contexts and Raters
6 Studying Teacher Effectiveness
7 Identifying Consumers Compulsive Buying Tendencies
16 Towards a More Rigorous Scientific Approach to Social Measurement
17 Measuring Conceptualisations of Morality
Definition Measurement and Interpretation
19 Ethical Issues in Social Measurement
20 Measuring is More Than Assigning Numbers
21 Is Social Measurement Possible and Is It Necessary?
SECTION IV The Real World Practice of Measurement
22 Sensitive Issues and the Difficulty to Measure

SECTION II The Context of Measurement
8 Linguistic Factors in the Assessment of English Language Learners
9 Measurement Issues in Crosscultural Research
10 Conceptualizing and Measuring Culture
11International Comparisons of Educational Attainment
Time and the Grid
13 Approaches to Measuring Multidimension Constructs across the Life Course
14 Description and Discovery in Sociospatial Analysis
SECTION III Fundamental Issues in Measurement
15 Understanding the Intangibles of Measurement in the Social Sciences
23 Indirect Measurement
24 Increasing the Measurement Accuracy of Consumption Intentions
25 Making Applied Measurement Effective and Efficient
26 Contemporary Challenges of Longitudinal Measurement Using HRS Data
27 Measuring the Dimensions of Social Capital in Developing Countries
29 Assessing Performance of School Systems
Author Index
General Index

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About the author (2010)

Madhu Viswanathan is an Associate Professor of Marketing in the Department of Business Administration within the College of Business at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, where he has been on the faculty since 1990. He holds a Ph.D. in Business Administration (Marketing) from the University of Minnesota, and a Bachelor of Technology in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. He teaches a course on measurement and research methods to Ph.D.. students and marketing research to undergraduate and MBA students. He has been listed several times as an excellent instructor at the University of Illinois. His research has appeared in journals, including the Journal of Applied Psychology, the Journal of Consumer Psychology, the Journal of Marketing Research, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, and Computer, Speech, and Language. His research is in two areas: measurement and research methodology and low-literate buyer and seller behavior. His work on literacy has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, and the Illinois Center for International Business Education and Research. He serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Consumer Psychology, the Journal of Consumer Research, and Psychology and Marketing. He has served as the Secretary-Treasurer for the Society for Consumer Psychology and as the Chair of the Consumer Behavior Special Interest Group of the American Marketing Association. He also chaired national conferences for the American Marketing Association and the Society for Consumer Psychology. He directs the Marketplace Literacy Project (, a nonprofit organization which aims to disseminate knowledge about low-literate buyer and seller behavior. Its activities include the development and distribution of educational materials for adult education, nutrition, and other programs targeted at low-literate consumers in the US, and development and provision of business and consumer literacy training for low-literate, low-income adults in India and other similar contexts. He lives in Champaign, Illinois, with his wife and 10-year old son.

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