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Experience Sampling Method
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Experience Sampling Method
Measuring the Quality of Everyday Life



August 2006 | 368 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Experience Sampling Method: Measuring the Quality of Everyday Life is the first book to bring together the theoretical foundations and practical applications of this indispensable methodology. Authors Joel M. Hektner, Jennifer A. Schmidt, and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi provide fascinating information for anyone interested in how people go about their daily lives.

Key Features:  
  • Provides a step-by-step guide: In nontechnical prose, the book details the logistics of carrying out an Experience Sampling Method (ESM) study and guides the reader through every step of the process, from conceiving the research question to analyzing the data. In addition, a through treatment of the measurement of Csikszentmihalyi's flow describes all of the different ways in which flow can be measured.
  • Includes real-life examples: This book gives readers useful tips to consider before implementing a study, based on real-life examples. It illustrates how the ESM has been used to address a diverse array of topics in social science research including the phenomenology of everyday life, gender differences, family relations, work experiences, cross-cultural differences and similarities, school experiences, and mental health.
  • Offers a complete overview of the foundations for ESM: This is the first source to compile findings from a large and increasingly diverse research literature documenting the use of the ESM. A comprehensive overview is given of issues affecting reliability and validity of the method and empirical evidence of its psychometric properties.
Intended Audience:  
This is a must-have resource for social and behavioral scientists who are studying the human experience in everyday life and need guidelines for how to validate and present their data. It can also be used in various advanced undergraduate and graduate research methods courses in the departments of Education, Educational Psychology, Psychology, Nursing, and Health.

 
List of Tables and Figures
 
Acknowledgments
 
Part I: The Origins of ESM
 
Chapter 1: Epistemological Foundations for the Measurement of Experience
A Systematic Phenomenology

 
The Experience Sampling Method

 
A Brief History

 
How Trustworthy Are Subjective Self-Reports?

 
What Can We Learn From ESM?

 
 
Chapter 2: Theoretical Foundations of ESM
Biology, Culture, and Daily Behavior

 
Subjective Experience in Context: The Interplay of Psychological Processes and Cognitive Functions

 
Interaction of Individuals and Environments

 
Experience Fluctuations, Well-Being, and Development

 
A Theoretical Compass for Exploring Experience

 
 
Part II: How to Measure the Quality of Everyday Life
 
Chapter 3: Collecting the Data
Designing a Study Using ESM

 
Equipment and Signaling Schedules

 
Designing the Form

 
Other Design Decisions

 
Implementing the Study

 
Documentation

 
 
Chapter 4: Dealing With the Data: Coding, Entry, Cleaning, and Data Management
Developing a Codebook

 
Coding the External Coordinates of Experience

 
Conding the Internal Coordinates of Experience

 
What to Do With the Codes Once They Are Developed: Physically Coding and Entering the Data

 
Setup, Cleaning, and Manipulation of Data Files

 
Response-Level Data and Person-Level Data

 
Postentry Data Manipulation

 
Data File Management and Documentation

 
 
Chapter 5: Types of Analyses
Qualitative Approaches

 
Graphic and Numeric Descriptive Information

 
Planning for Statistical Analyses

 
OLS Statistical Techniques

 
Multilevel and Other Complex Statistical Techniques

 
 
Chapter 6: Psychometrics of ESM Data
Validity of Method

 
Validity of ESM Measurements

 
Reliability of ESM Measurements

 
 
Part III: Uses of ESM in Social Science Research
 
Chapter 7: Samples of Experience
The Who, What, Where, When, and How of Daily Experiences

 
Quality of Experience in Selected Activities

 
Quality of Experience of Selected Groups of People

 
Emotions, Well-Being, and Flow

 
 
Chapter 8: The Experience of Males and Females
Differences in Activities

 
Differences in Companionship

 
Similiarities and Differences in Emotional Experience

 
Other Gender Differences in Adolescence

 
 
Chapter 9: The Experience of Family Life
Methodological Concerns and Variations

 
The Couple Relationship

 
The Arrival of the First Child

 
Juggling Work and Family Roles

 
The Adolescent's Experience of Family

 
Transmission of Emotions Between Family Members

 
Comparisons Between Families: Optimal Conditions for Adolescent Development

 
 
Chapter 10: The Experience of Work
Methodological Concerns and Variations

 
Time and Work

 
The Quality of Experience at Work: General Trends

 
The Quality of Experience Across Workers

 
The Quality of Experience Across Work Activities

 
The Intersection of Work and Family

 
The Experience of Unemployment

 
Adolescent Work

 
 
Chapter 11: Examining Cross-Cultural Differences
Methodological Concerns and Variations

 
Culture and Time Use

 
Cross-Cultural Variation in General Affective Experience

 
Culture and Subjective Experience in Various Activities

 
Cross-Cultural Examination of Flow

 
Studies of American Subcultures

 
 
Chapter 12: Educational Applications
Methodological Concerns and Variations

 
Time Use and Structure of Classrooms

 
The Quality of Students' Classroom Experiences

 
Comparing Students' Classroom Experiences

 
After-School Programs

 
Studies of Adult Learners

 
The Experience of Teachers

 
 
Chapter 13: Clinical Applications
Methodological Concerns and Variations

 
Use of ESM for Describing and Contextualizing Experiences of Disorder

 
Use of ESM in Therapy and in Treatment Evaluation

 
 
Concluding Thoughts
Ten Major Issues ESM Illuminates

 
 
Appendix A: Sample ESM Data Collection Forms (ESFs)
 
Appendix B: ESM Coding Scheme Used in the Sloan Study of Youth and Social Development
 
References
 
Index
 
About the Authors

"This book provides interesting reading for students in research method courses and belongs on the must-read list of investigators who are considering the application of ESM to their own research."

Susan L. Trumbetta
Key features
  • A complete overview of the foundations for ESM;
  • A step-by-step guide for researchers designing and implementing an ESM study;
  • Useful tips to consider before implementing a study, based on real-life examples;
  • Specific uses for ESM in research, including coverage of gender, family life, work, cross-cultural differences, education, and clinical applications.

 

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

Chapter 5

Chapter 12


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