This study is provided by Resource Center for Minority Data (RCMD).

Current Population Survey, September 2011: Volunteer Supplement (ICPSR 33881)

Alternate Title:  CPS, September 2011

Principal Investigator(s):


This data collection is comprised of responses from two sets of survey questionnaires, the basic monthly Current Population Survey (CPS) and a survey on the topic of volunteer service, which was administered as a supplement to the September CPS questionnaire. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Corporation for National and Community Service jointly sponsored the volunteer service supplemental questions.

The CPS, administered monthly, is a labor force survey providing current estimates of the economic status and activities of the population of the United States. Specifically, the CPS provides estimates of total employment (both farm and nonfarm), nonfarm self-employed persons, domestics, and unpaid helpers in nonfarm family enterprises, wage and salaried employees, and estimates of total unemployment. Data from the CPS are provided for the week prior to the survey.

The volunteer supplement questions were asked of persons age 15 years old or older. Proxy responses were allowed if attempts for a self-response were unsuccessful. The supplement contained questions about the household member's participation in volunteer service from September 1, 2010, to the date of the interview. Household members were queried on their involvement in their community, about the frequency of volunteer activity, types of organizations they volunteered for, the types of activities they chose, whether any volunteering was done in a foreign country or more than 120 miles from home. Data are also provided on whether or not donations of money, assets, or property valued at 25 dollars or more were made in the past year to charitable or religious organizations.

Demographic variables include age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, marital status, veteran status, educational attainment, occupation, and income.

Series: Current Population Survey Series

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Study Description


United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census, United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and Corporation for National and Community Service. Current Population Survey, September 2011: Volunteer Supplement. ICPSR33881-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2013-04-12. http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR33881.v1

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Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   armed forces, associations, census data, charitable donations, church groups, community organizations, community participation, demographic characteristics, employment, fundraising, Hispanic or Latino origins, households, income, industry, job change, labor force, layoffs, memberships, occupational status, occupations, organizations, part-time employment, political activism, population characteristics, population estimates, social activism, unemployment, volunteers, wages and salaries, work, work experience, working hours

Geographic Coverage:   United States

Time Period:  

  • 2010-09--2011-09

Date of Collection:  

  • 2011-09-18--2011-09-27

Unit of Observation:   individual within housing unit

Universe:   The basic monthly CPS universe consisted of all persons aged 15 years and older in the civilian noninstitutional population of the United States living in households. The September 2011 supplement universe consisted of the full CPS sample of all households, for civilian persons aged 15 years and over.

Data Types:   survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Users are strongly encouraged to refer to the User Guide (produced by the Principal Investigators), which contains additional information about the monthly CPS survey methodology, as well as detailed technical documentation specific to the Veterans Supplement. In particular, Attachment 8 of the User Guide contains the supplement questionnaire.

Edited universe statements are defined for individual variables and are located in the Basic or Supplement record layouts found in Attachment 6 or 7 of the User Guide, respectively.

ICPSR removed all FILLER and PADDING variables from the data. As a result, the column locations in any ICPSR-released data product (e.g., codebook and setup files) will have column locations that are not consistent with locations described in the User Guide.


Sample:   A multistage probability sample was selected to represent the universe of approximately 56,000 households. The sample was based on the results of the decennial census, with coverage in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.


The data contain eight weight variables:

  • Household Weight -- HWHHWGT -- Used for tallying household characteristics.
  • Family Weight -- PWFMWGT -- Used only for tallying family characteristics.
  • Longitudinal Weight -- PWLGWGT -- Found only on adult records matched from month to month (used for gross flows analysis).
  • Outgoing Rotation Weight -- PWORWGT -- Used for tallying information collected only in outgoing rotations.
  • Final Weight -- PWSSWGT -- Used for most tabulations, controlled to independent estimates for (1) States; (2) Origin, Sex, and Age; and (3) Age, Race, and Sex.
  • Veteran's Weight -- PWVETWGT -- Used for tallying veterans data only.
  • Composited Final Weight -- PWCMPWGT -- Used to create BLS's published labor force statistics.
  • Supplement Non-Response Weight -- PWNRWGT -- Used when constructing estimates from supplement items, and accounts for missing data due to non-response.

Users are strongly encouraged to refer to the User Guide for detailed information on how to use the weights, as well as how they were derived.

Mode of Data Collection:   computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI), computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI)


Original ICPSR Release:  



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