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Study of Spirituality in the United States 2020




A Study of Spirituality in the United States 2020 was conducted by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago on behalf of the Fetzer Institute and Hattaway Communications. This survey brings people's spiritual lives to light, focusing on how Americans' spirituality may inform their prosocial and civic behaviors. It also includes a focus is on how people identify as spiritual and religious and the perceived differences and similarities between the two identities.

The ARDA has added four additional variables to the original data set to enhance the users' experience on our site.

Data File

Cases: 3609
Variables: 263
Weight Variable: WEIGHT

Statistical weights for the study eligible respondents were calculated using panel base sampling weights to start.

Panel base sampling weights for all sampled housing units are computed as the inverse of probability of selection from the NORC National Frame (the sampling frame that is used to sample housing units for AmeriSpeak) or address-based sample. The sample design and recruitment protocol for the AmeriSpeak Panel involves subsampling of initial nonrespondent housing units. These subsampled non-respondent housing units are selected for an in-person follow-up. The subsample of housing units that are selected for the nonresponse follow-up (NRFU) have their panel base sampling weights inflated by the inverse of the subsampling rate. The base sampling weights are further adjusted to account for unknown eligibility and nonresponse among eligible housing units. The household-level nonresponse adjusted weights are then post-stratified to external counts for number of households obtained from the Current Population Survey. Then, these household-level post-stratified weights are assigned to each eligible adult in every recruited household. Furthermore, a person-level nonresponse adjustment accounts for non-responding adults within a recruited household.

Finally, panel weights are raked to external population totals associated with age, sex, education, race/Hispanic ethnicity, housing tenure, telephone status, and Census Division. The external population totals are obtained from the Current Population Survey. The weights adjusted to the external population totals are the final panel weights.

Study-specific base sampling weights are derived using a combination of the final panel weight and the probability of selection associated with the sampled panel member. Since not all sampled panel members respond to the survey interview, an adjustment is needed to account for and adjust for survey nonrespondents. This adjustment decreases potential nonresponse bias associated with sampled panel members who did not complete the survey interview for the study. Thus, the nonresponse adjusted survey weights for the study are adjusted via a raking ratio method to 18-plus-year-old general population totals associated with the following socio-demographic characteristics: age, sex, education, race/Hispanic ethnicity, and Census Division. The weights adjusted to the external population totals are the final study weights.

Raking and re-raking is done during the weighting process such that the weighted demographic distribution of the survey completes resemble the demographic distribution in the target population. The assumption is that the key survey items are related to the demographics. Therefore, by aligning the survey respondent demographics with the target population, the key survey items should also be in closer alignment with the target population.

Data Collection

1/16/2020 - 2/10/2020

Original Survey (Instrument)

Study of Spirituality in the United States 2020

Funded By

The funder of this study, the Fetzer Institute, is a private foundation based in Kalamazoo, Michigan with a mission to help build the spiritual foundation for a loving world. Fetzer believes we must go beyond political, social, and economic strategies to address the psychological and spiritual roots of the world's most critical issues.

Collection Procedures

Cognitive interviews were conducted in December of 2019 to fine tune the survey instrument. Feedback from these interviews was incorporated into the programmed survey used for pretesting.

A small sample of English-speaking AmeriSpeak web-mode panelists were invited on Jan. 3, 2020 for a pretest. In total, NORC collected 111 pretest interviews. The initial data from the pretest was reviewed by NORC and a delivered to Veronica Selzler.

Questions Q19 and Q19A were revised after pretesting to clarify that these questions were inquiring about respondents' personal spiritual/religious experience with specific activities before fielding the main survey. The number of completes for the main was increased to 3,600 interviews after pretesting since the pretest survey duration was significantly lower than expected.

A sub-sample AmeriSpeak web-mode panelists were invited to the survey on Jan. 16, 2020 in a soft-launch. The initial data from the soft-launch was reviewed and the remainder of sampled AmeriSpeak panelists were invited to the survey on Jan. 17, 2020.

In total, NORC collected 3,609 interviews, 3,256 by web mode and 353 by phone mode.

Sampling Procedures

A general population sample of U.S. adults age 18-plus was selected from NORC's AmeriSpeak Panel for this study.

The sample for a specific study is selected from the AmeriSpeak Panel using sampling strata based on age, race/Hispanic ethnicity, education, and gender (48 sampling strata in total). The size of the selected sample per sampling stratum is determined by the population distribution for each stratum. In addition, sample selection takes into account expected differential survey completion rates by demographic groups so that the set of panel members with a completed interview for a study is a representative sample of the target population. If panel household has one more than one active adult panel member, only one adult in the household is eligible for selection (random within-household sampling). Panelists selected for an AmeriSpeak study earlier in the business week are not eligible for sample selection until the following business week.

Principal Investigators

National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago
The Fetzer Institute
Hattaway Communications

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