Don't Spin the Pen: Two Alternative Methods for Second-Stage Sampling in Urban Cluster Surveys.
AffiliationEpicentre, 8, rue Saint Sabin, 75011 Paris, France. firstname.lastname@example.org
MetadataShow full item record
JournalEmerging Themes in Epidemiology
AbstractIn two-stage cluster surveys, the traditional method used in second-stage sampling (in which the first household in a cluster is selected) is time-consuming and may result in biased estimates of the indicator of interest. Firstly, a random direction from the center of the cluster is selected, usually by spinning a pen. The houses along that direction are then counted out to the boundary of the cluster, and one is then selected at random to be the first household surveyed. This process favors households towards the center of the cluster, but it could easily be improved. During a recent meningitis vaccination coverage survey in Maradi, Niger, we compared this method of first household selection to two alternatives in urban zones: 1) using a superimposed grid on the map of the cluster area and randomly selecting an intersection; and 2) drawing the perimeter of the cluster area using a Global Positioning System (GPS) and randomly selecting one point within the perimeter. Although we only compared a limited number of clusters using each method, we found the sampling grid method to be the fastest and easiest for field survey teams, although it does require a map of the area. Selecting a random GPS point was also found to be a good method, once adequate training can be provided. Spinning the pen and counting households to the boundary was the most complicated and time-consuming. The two methods tested here represent simpler, quicker and potentially more robust alternatives to spinning the pen for cluster surveys in urban areas. However, in rural areas, these alternatives would favor initial household selection from lower density (or even potentially empty) areas. Bearing in mind these limitations, as well as available resources and feasibility, investigators should choose the most appropriate method for their particular survey context.
PublisherPublished by BioMed Central
- Use of handheld computers with global positioning systems for probability sampling and data entry in household surveys.
- Authors: Vanden Eng JL, Wolkon A, Frolov AS, Terlouw DJ, Eliades MJ, Morgah K, Takpa V, Dare A, Sodahlon YK, Doumanou Y, Hawley WA, Hightower AW
- Issue date: 2007 Aug
- A field test of three LQAS designs to assess the prevalence of acute malnutrition.
- Authors: Deitchler M, Valadez JJ, Egge K, Fernandez S, Hennigan M
- Issue date: 2007 Aug
- Sampling in health geography: reconciling geographical objectives and probabilistic methods. An example of a health survey in Vientiane (Lao PDR).
- Authors: Vallée J, Souris M, Fournet F, Bochaton A, Mobillion V, Peyronnie K, Salem G
- Issue date: 2007 Jun 1
- Achieving equal probability of selection under various random sampling strategies.
- Authors: Peters TJ, Eachus JI
- Issue date: 1995 Apr
- GridSample: an R package to generate household survey primary sampling units (PSUs) from gridded population data.
- Authors: Thomson DR, Stevens FR, Ruktanonchai NW, Tatem AJ, Castro MC
- Issue date: 2017 Jul 19