Current Population Survey, September 2015: Volunteer Supplement (ICPSR 36411)
Version Date: May 4, 2016 View help for published
Principal Investigator(s): View help for Principal Investigator(s)
United States. Bureau of the Census; United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics; Corporation for National and Community Service
- Current Population Survey Volunteer Supplement Series
Alternate Title View help for Alternate Title
Summary View help for Summary
This data collection is comprised of responses from two sets of survey questionnaires, the basic 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 Corporation for National and Community Service jointly sponsored the supplemental questions for September.
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.
All persons eligible for the labor force items of the basic CPS were also eligible for the volunteer supplement. Altogether, 150,087 interviews were conducted during the period of September 13-19, 2015. 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, 2014, to the date of the interview. Household members were queried about the frequency of volunteer activity, the kinds of organizations they volunteered with, the types of activities they chose, whether any volunteering was done in a foreign country, and involvement in their community.
Demographic variables include age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, marital status, veteran status, educational attainment, occupation, and income.
Citation View help for Citation
Subject Terms View help for Subject Terms
Geographic Coverage View help for Geographic Coverage
Smallest Geographic Unit View help for Smallest Geographic Unit
Core Based Statistical Area (CBSA)
Restrictions View help for Restrictions
Distributor(s) View help for Distributor(s)
Time Period(s) View help for Time Period(s)
Date of Collection View help for Date of Collection
Data Collection Notes View help for Data Collection Notes
Users are strongly encouraged to refer the User Guide (produced by the Principal Investigators), which contains the questionnaire for the supplement, as well as additional detailed technical documentation regarding the study design, sampling frame used, and response rates.
The universe statements for each variable are defined in either the basic or supplement record layout, which is located in Attachment 6 and 7, respectively, of the User Guide.
Data deposited with ICPSR did not contain FILLER and PADDING variables as indicated in the Basic CPS and Supplement Record Layout located in Attachment 6. 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.
Due to the limit in the number of allowable rows of 65,536 and allowable columns of 256 in Excel 97-2003 (file ending, xls), the Excel file being distributed with this collection is in the later version of Excel (file ending of xlsx).
Study Purpose View help for Study Purpose
The purpose of the 2015 Volunteer Supplement was to examine Americans' volunteer activities in the United States.
Study Design View help for Study Design
The 2015 Volunteer Supplement was conducted as part of the Current Population Survey, an ongoing data collection effort of the United States Census Bureau. The survey was administered to household members aged 15 years and older in the households that were in the exit round of the CPS sample rotation. Computer-assisted personal interviews and computer-assisted telephone interviews were conducted during the period of September 13-19, 2015. Proxy respondents were allowed if attempts for self-responses were unsuccessful. Altogether, 150,087 respondents were interviewed for the 2015 Volunteer Supplement.
Sample View help for Sample
Sample households are selected by a multistage stratified statistical sampling scheme. A multistage probability sample was selected to represent the universe of approximately 56,000 households. The current CPS sample was selected based on 2000 census information. The first stage of the 2000 sample design created 2,025 geographic areas called primary sampling units (PSUs) in the entire United States. These PSUs were grouped into strata within each state. Some of these PSUs formed strata by themselves and were in sample with certainty, which is referred to as self-representing. Of the remaining nonself-representing PSUs, one PSU was selected from each stratum with the probability of selection proportional to the population of the PSU. A total of 824 PSUs were selected for sampling. The second stage of the sample design selected housing units within these PSUs.
Approximately 72,000 housing units are assigned for interview each month, of which about 60,000 are occupied and thus eligible for interview. The remainder are units found to be destroyed, vacant, converted to nonresidential use, containing persons whose usual place of residence is elsewhere, or ineligible for other reasons. Of the 60,000 occupied housing units, approximately 7 percent are not interviewed in a given month due to temporary absence (vacation, etc.), the residents are not found at home after repeated attempts, inability of persons contacted to respond, unavailability for other reasons, and refusals to cooperate. The interviewed households contain approximately 108,000 persons 15 years old and over, approximately 27,000 children 0-14 years old, and about 450 Armed Forces members living with civilians either on or off base within these households.
Time Method View help for Time Method
Universe View help for Universe
The basic CPS universe consists of all persons aged 15 years and older in the civilian noninstitutional population of the United States living in households. The September 2015 supplement universe consists of the full CPS sample of all households, for civilian persons age 15 and over.
Unit(s) of Observation View help for Unit(s) of Observation
Data Type(s) View help for Data Type(s)
Mode of Data Collection View help for Mode of Data Collection
Description of Variables View help for Description of Variables
The CPS variables provide labor force data containing current estimates of the economic status and activities of this population which includes 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. The CPS variables also cover respondents' demographic information: age, sex, race, marital status, educational attainment, family relationship, occupation, and industry. The Volunteer Supplement variables provide household member's participation in volunteer service from September 1, 2014 to the date of the interview. Respondents were asked about the frequency of their volunteer activity, the kinds of organizations they volunteered with, and the types of activities they chose. Among those individuals who did not volunteer, the questions identified what barriers they experienced in volunteering, or what would encourage them to volunteer.
Response Rates View help for Response Rates
The effect of nonresponse cannot be measured directly, but one indication of its potential effect is the nonresponse rate. For the September 2015 basic CPS, the household-level nonresponse rate was 13.0 percent. The person-level nonresponse rate for the Volunteer Service supplement was an additional 18.1 percent.
Original Release Date View help for Original Release Date
Version History View help for Version History
- United States. Bureau of the Census, United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and Corporation for National and Community Service. Current Population Survey, September 2015: Volunteer Supplement. ICPSR36411-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2016-04-29. http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR36411.v1
2016-05-04 The Variable Groups for this data collection were updated.
2016-04-29 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:
- Created variable labels and/or value labels.
- Created online analysis version with question text.
- Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.
- Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.
Weight View help for Weight
The data contain seven CPS weight variables:
- Household Weight, HWHHWGT, should be used for tallying household characteristics.
- Family Weight, PWFMWGT, should be used only for tallying family characteristics.
- Longitudinal Weight, PWLGWGT, should be used for gross flows analysis and is found only on adult records matched from month to month.
- Outgoing Rotation Weight, PWORWGT, should be used for tallying information collected only in outgoing rotations.
- Final Weight, PWSSWGT, is used for most tabulations, controlled to independent estimates for (1) States; (2) Origin, Sex, and Age; and (3) Age, Race, and Sex.
- Veterans Weight, PWVETWGT, should be used for tallying veterans data only.
- Composited Final Weight, PWCMPWGT, is used to create BLS's published labor force statistics.
The one supplement weight variable associated with the 2015 CPS Volunteer Supplement:
Supplement Non-Response Weight, PWNRWGT, should be used to account for missing data due to non-response, and used when constructing estimates from supplement items.
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.
The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.
- The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented.