Record decimal values in Interviewer as entered when value after decimal is 0

Proposal

When an interviewer records a decimal value for numeric questions with decimals allowed, the decimal value is recorded as entered (e.g., if 8.2 is entered, 8.2 is recorded). However, there is one noteworthy exception: when the number after the decimal is zero (e.g., if 8.0 is entered, 8 is recorded).

To see this, attempt to enter 8.0 for this question

While this may be OK for many use cases, it is problematic when a survey requires interviewers to record measures with a certain fixed precision (e.g., 8 may or may not be 8.0). Hence, Interviewers should record all real values as they are entered–particularly those with a 0 after the decimal.

Affected subsystems

Depending on how the system is structured, this either affects only Interviewer or all subsystems (with the possible exception of Designer).

Users

This feature is particularly important for users whose surveys require measures of a certain precision.

A few examples:

  • Anthropometrics, where height and weight should be recorded to the maximum precision offered by the measurement instruments (e.g., weight with one decimal place)
  • Weight of crop-cutting
  • Weigth of consumption items, for surveys that attempt to create conversion factors from non-standard to standard units (e.g., 1 large heap of tomatoes → X kg)

Surveys

  • Survey currently underway where anthropometrics is a big focus
  • Two upcoming surveys with anthropometrics in Malawi and Nigeria
  • One ongoing survey with crop-cutting in Uganda

Alternatives

The current work-arounds include:

  • Asking interviewers to provide clarfication about measurements as comments (e.g., “the measurement is 8.0”).
  • Adding a confirmation question for every question of this type to see if the lack of precision means that the measure ends in “.0”