Fact Tank Jan. 15, 2014

Pew Research increases share of interviews conducted by cellphone

In the coming months, 60% of interviews in our national polls will be conducted via cellphones and 40% on landline phones.

Fact Tank Jan. 3, 2014

Republicans’ views on evolution

Significantly fewer Republicans believe in evolution than did so four years ago, setting them apart from Democrats and independents. But behind this finding is a puzzle: If the views of the overall public have remained steady, and there has been little change among people of other political affiliations, how do you account for the Republican numbers? An explainer.

Fact Tank Dec. 20, 2013

Polling on the deficit: Why question order matters

Polling organizations devote a great deal of attention to the wording of survey questions, but they need to be just as concerned about how questions are ordered. The context in which a specific question is asked, particularly what directly precedes a question in a telephone interview, often has an impact on the way people respond.

Oct. 9, 2013

Study: Polls may underestimate anti-gay sentiment and size of gay, lesbian population

A study using a novel research method raises questions.

Sep. 30, 2013

Study: Opposition to same-sex marriage may be understated in public opinion polls

Blame “social desirability” bias.

Fact Tank Sep. 10, 2013

Can presidential speeches change minds? The evidence suggest not

The presidency may well be a “bully pulpit,” in Theodore Roosevelt’s original sense, a position that commands attention. But as President Barack Obama prepares to address the nation Tuesday in support of taking military action against Syria, there’s little evidence (at least in recent times) that presidential speeches are very effective at moving the needle […]

U.S. Politics Jul. 26, 2013

Government Surveillance: A Question Wording Experiment

To better understand how the manner in which the government’s surveillance program is described affects public evaluations, the Pew Research Center conducted a question wording experiment.

Fact Tank Jun. 21, 2013

The challenges of conducting surveys of youth

Research with minors presents some unique challenges, ranging from getting the necessary legal permissions to reaching interviewees at a time that use of mobile phones is growing.

Fact Tank Jun. 13, 2013

How Pew Research conducted its national LGBT community survey

Why did Pew Research decide to conduct an LGBT-specific survey? We know from our surveys of the general public that there’s been a sharp increase in support for same-sex marriage and in societal acceptance of homosexuality over the past decade. Of course, we’re on the cusp of an important historical and cultural moment with the […]

Fact Tank May. 22, 2013

Polling when public attention is limited: Different questions, different results

Different outcomes in different polls about the subpoenas served on the Associated Press in a Justice Department leak investigation were a case study in the challenges pollsters face in a breaking news environment when public attention and information is relatively limited.