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Proposed Collection, Comment Request

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The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, conducts a pre-clearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA95) [44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)]. This program helps to ensure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is soliciting comments concerning the proposed revision of the “National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997.” A copy of the proposed information collection request (ICR) can be obtained by contacting the individual listed in the Addresses section of this notice.


Written comments must be submitted to the office listed in the Addresses section below on or before February 6, 2015.


Send comments to Nora Kincaid, BLS Clearance Officer, Division of Management Systems, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Room 4080, 2 Massachusetts Avenue NE., Washington, DC 20212. Written comments also may be transmitted by fax to 202-691-5111 (this is not a toll free number).

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Nora Kincaid, BLS Clearance Officer, 202-691-7628 (this is not a toll free number). (See Addresses section.)

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I. Background

The National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 (NLSY97) is a nationally representative sample of persons who were born in the years 1980 to 1984. These respondents were ages 12-17 when the first round of annual interviews began in 1997; starting with round sixteen, the NLSY97 is conducted on a biennial basis. Round seventeen interviews will occur from September 2015 to May 2016. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) contracts with a vendor to conduct the NLSY97. The primary objective of the survey is to study the transition from schooling to the establishment of careers and families. The longitudinal focus of this survey requires information to be collected from the same individuals over many years in order to trace their education, training, work experience, fertility, income, and program participation.

One of the goals of the Department of Labor (DOL) is to produce and disseminate timely, accurate, and relevant information about the U.S. labor force. The BLS contributes to this goal by gathering information about the labor force and labor market and disseminating it to policymakers and the public so that participants in those markets can make more informed, and thus more efficient, choices. Research based on the NLSY97 contributes to the formation of national policy in the areas of education, training, work experience, fertility, income, and program participation. In addition to the reports that the BLS produces based on data from the NLSY97, members of the academic community publish articles and reports based on NLSY97 data for the DOL and other funding agencies. To date, approximately 372 articles examining NLSY97 data have been published in scholarly journals. The survey design provides data gathered from the same respondents over time to form the only dataset that contains this type of information for this important population group. Without the collection of these data, an accurate longitudinal dataset could not be provided to researchers and policymakers, thus adversely affecting the DOL's ability to perform its policy- and report-making activities.

II. Current Action

The BLS seeks approval to conduct round 17 of biennial interviews of the NLSY97. Respondents of the NLSY97 will undergo an interview of approximately 61 minutes during which they will answer questions about schooling and labor market experiences, family relationships, and community background.

During the fielding period for the main round 17 interviews, about 2 percent of respondents will be asked to participate in a brief validation interview a few weeks after the initial interview. The purpose of the validation interview is to verify that the initial interview took place as the interviewer reported and to assess the data quality of selected questionnaire items.

The BLS plans to record randomly selected segments of the main interviews during round 17. Recording interviews helps the BLS and NORC to Start Printed Page 72705ensure that the interviews actually took place and interviewers are reading the questions exactly as worded and entering the responses properly. Recording also helps to identify parts of the interview that might be causing problems or misunderstanding for interviewers or respondents. Each respondent will be informed that the interview may be recorded for quality control, testing, and training purposes. If the respondent objects to the recording of the interview, the interviewer will confirm to the respondent that the interview will not be recorded and then proceed with the interview.

The round 17 questionnaire will resemble the round 16 questionnaire with few modifications. The round 17 questionnaire proposes an experiment to investigate the efficacy of preloads in bounding the respondents' recall of migration dates. This experiment will allow us to build a body of knowledge about the feasibility of web questionnaire administration, which may require fielding questions without preloads. The results will give us some insight into the impact of removing these preloads on data quality.

New questions include respondents' business ownership, new wage bargaining questions, questions about nonresident children, one question about medical debt and mental health scale questions. Round 17 also reintroduced the child care long section, parent supportiveness, “whom do you turn to”, alcohol and drug use, and health behaviors questions from previous rounds.

As in prior rounds of the NLSY97, round 17 will include a pretest conducted several months before the main fielding to test survey procedures and questions and resolve problems before the main fielding begins.

III. Desired Focus of Comments

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is particularly interested in comments that:

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility.
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used.
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected.
  • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submissions of responses.

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Agenc y: Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Title: National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997.

OMB Number: 1220-0157.

Affected Public: Individuals or households.

FormTotal respondentsFrequencyTotal responsesAverage time per responseEstimated total burden (hours)
NLSY97 Pretest June-July150One-time15061152.5
NLSY97 R16 advance web test June-July 20131,200One-time1,20010200
Main NLSY97: September 2013-May 20147,200One-time7,200617,320
Validation interview: October 2013-June 2014144One-time14449.6
* The difference between the total number of respondents and the total number of responses reflects the fact that about 7,200 are expected to complete the main interview. In addition, about 144 respondents will be interviewed twice, once in the main survey and a second time in the 4-minute validation interview. We estimate achieving about 1,200 web updates; most of these will be from respondents who also complete the main interview, but a small number (perhaps 50) may complete only the web update and not also the main interview.

Total Burden Cost (capital/startup): $0.

Total Burden Cost (operating/maintenance): $0.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for Office of Management and Budget approval of the information collection request; they also will become a matter of public record.

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Signed at Washington, DC, this 3rd day of December 2014.

Kimberly D. Hill,

Chief, Division of Management Systems, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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[FR Doc. 2014-28655 Filed 12-5-14; 8:45 am]