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Monday, June 14
Mon, Jun 14, 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Topics in Classification and Frame Development

Classifying university housing in the 2020 Census of Group Quarters (308197)

*Alfred "Dave" Tuttle, US Census Bureau 

Keywords: residential facilities, group quarters, university, self-classification, screening interview

The U.S. Census Bureau is tasked with counting all people in the country in the 2020 Census, including those living or staying in residential facilities run by various kinds of institutions (group quarters or GQ) such as university housing. The GQ enumeration attempts to distinguish traditional university housing operated by universities from residential complexes that are owned or managed by third parties on behalf of universities. The correct classification of privately-run university GQ’s is significant because it allows those units to be distinguished from apartment complexes and other multi-unit residences, and handled by specialized GQ enumeration operations rather than the usual nonresponse follow-up operations for the general population. The classification of university housing will be accomplished during the GQ advance contact (GQAC) operation. GQAC field staff will conduct telephone interviews with university representatives involved in the management of residential facilities to obtain information needed to update the GQ frame and determine the preferred method of enumeration, among other things. University staff will be asked a short series of questions to determine whether any of the housing available to students through the university are owned or managed by third-party entities, based on certain criteria. We will evaluate the classification procedures by observing interviews conducted by GQAC staff with university representatives. Of particular interest are whether the criteria used to distinguish university- and third-party housing are valid; how university staff react to the questions; and whether GQAC staff use unscripted information to clarify the distinction between housing types and make judgments as to the appropriate classification. Findings from this study will be used to inform changes to the classification criteria and questions. This study will also provide broader insights into self-classification by establishment survey respondents.