Social Desirability Stereotypes

962 Words4 Pages
Social Desirability Bias in Post- Election Self-Reports

Jeaniffer Oyee

September 29, 2015

Word Count: 980

PROBLEM

Post-election turnout surveys usually yield rates of voting in elections that are higher than official turnout rates. This is caused by the misrepresentation by individuals who did not vote. Voting is a civic act of duty, so some respondents may be unwilling to admit that they did not live up to their civic duty. In the data provided, the American Election Studies (ANES) variable shows the result of their post-election face to face interview with a sample of adults. Self- reports have often overestimated voter turnout, and some researchers’ theorize this happens because some respondents deliberately misreport that they voted. Consequently, these respondents lying about their civic act of duty distorts voter turnout in the United States.
…show more content…
For example, the 1980 election ANES turnout estimated 71 percent, in contrast to the government’s official turnout rate. The Voting Age Population (VAP) turnout was only 52 percent, and the Voting Eligible Population was just 54 percent.
The VAP and VEP turnout rates are both relevant. However, while VAP is great for collecting data, VEP is more relevant in constructing turnout measures. For the reason that, VAP includes in the denominator ineligible felons and non-citizens, which happen to have increased in numbers from 1980-2008. Therefore, in order to develop accurate, and less biased measurements, the VEP measure is better than its VAP counterpart because it doesn’t include the felons and non-citizens. Most importantly, VEP turnout is very effective in finding out the turnouts for both presidential and midterm
Get Access