Population Association of America Annual Meeting
31 March–2 April 2011
"Transitions to adulthood in rural Malawi: A comparison of the timing and sequencing of major life events using different modes of data collection"
Barbara S. Mensch, Erica Soler-Hampejsek, Christine Kelly, and Paul C. Hewett
Well-timed and sequenced transitions from childhood to adulthood have important consequences for young people. While increasing attention has been devoted to documenting transitions to adulthood, it is the rare study that has explored the timing and sequence of multiple transitions—sexual debut, school leaving, marriage, first pregnancy, first birth, labor force participation—in a representative sample of developing-country youth in large part because the data are not available to do so. Using data from the first four rounds of the Malawi Schooling and Adolescent Survey, a longitudinal survey of over 2,600 adolescents aged 14–16 when first interviewed in 2007, this paper will investigate the timing and sequencing of multiple life transitions using different modes of data collection. We will compare reporting of events using standard face-to-face interviewing, audio computer-assisted self-interviewing, and life event cards, a tool we developed for Round 3 to address concerns about reporting inconsistency.
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