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Final interview outcome code

Codes and Frequencies

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OUTCOME reports the outcome of the final attempt to interview ATUS sample members (respondents and non-respondents).

This variable provides the same information as INT_STAT2, which reports the interview status of each case. Researchers who do not need the level of detail provided in OUTCOME may instead use the first digit of this variable which corresponds to the broader interview status codes in INT_STAT2. Researchers may also want to use OUTCOME_ALT, which provides similar data but categorizes outcomes differently.

Several of the codes included in OUTCOME are the product of combinations of more detailed codes. Because these more detailed codes vary by year, combining them allows for full comparability across years. Brief descriptions of these combinations follow.

Cases were considered "Refusals" if the designated person refused the interview or another individual refused the interview on their behalf, or if the data collected was determined to be of very poor quality. "Refusal: direct refusal" is a product of codes for hostile break-off by parent, individual, guardian, or gatekeeper for the years 2003 and 2004. In 2003, this category additionally includes refusal by means of Congressional case and pre-refusal. In 2005-2006, hostile break-off and refusal by designated person or gatekeeper are included.

Across all years, "Refusal: data quality problem" consists of cases with fewer than 5 activities, cases in which "don't know" equals 180 or more diary minutes, or cases meeting both of these criteria. In earlier years (2003-2004) this code also includes cases of refusal due to other data quality issues.

Cases were coded as "Other non-interview" if interviewers were not able to successfully complete an interview for other reasons. "Other non-interview: Language barrier" includes non-interview due to general language barrier cases across all years, unresolved language barriers in earlier years (2003-2004), and unconverted hearing barriers in 2006.

Case outcome was recorded during the final contact attempt for the ATUS interview, about 2-5 months after the final CPS interview, with the exception of cases coded as "Refusal" due to poor data quality (value 303). These codes were applied after interviews were completed and reviewed.


OUTCOME is comparable across all years.


  • ATUS respondents and nonrespondents.


  • 2003-2022


This variable has no flags.