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Annual Survey of Orange County 1985


Baldassare, Mark (2014), Annual Survey of Orange County 1985, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.7280/D13W2Z


The Orange County Annual Survey is in its fourth year. The 1985 survey represents the first as a university-based research program with all its funding from external sources. It aims (1) to provide decision makers in the private and public sectors with valid and current information on Orange County residents; (2) to track shifts in important attitudes and population characteristics over time; (3) to study the social, economic, and political issues of Orange County from a nonadvocacy position; and (4) to help establish public discussion and enlightened debate in future public policy. The theme of this year's survey is "Orange County at Mid-Decade." The 1985 survey continues the analysis of attitudes on national issues by considering views towards social welfare spending. This survey analyzes geographical divisions of Orange County that represent distinguishable communities in terms of social, housing, and public policy concerns. The sample size is 1,008 Orange County adult residents.

Online data analysis & additional documentation in Link below.


The sample for the 1985 Orange County Annual Survey consists of 1,008 randomly selected residents who were interviewed by telephone. The sample stratified geographically, with half of the sample selected from north of the Santa Ana River and half from the south. For data analyses, the sample is statistically weighted to represent the actual distribution of the Orange County population. The sample in each area was chosen using a computer program which randomly generates telephone numbers from among working blocks of telephone exchanges. A working block is one that contains numbers in use. The total of telephone numbers generated within an exchange was in proportion to the number of residential phones represented by that exchange in the northern art of the county or the southern part of the county. Using this procedure, approximately 2,500 telephone numbers from the south and approximately 2,500 telephone numbers from the north were drawn. This procedure of random digit dialing ensures that unlisted as well as listed numbers are included the sample. Also, since over 97% of the households in Orange County have telephones, random dialing yields a sample representative of the population Orange County. The Troldahl-Carter Method was used in randomly selecting which adult member of the household was to be interviewed. This method consists of numerating the total number of adults in the household and the total number men in the household. Then, using a prearranged grid, the interviewer selects the individual in the household for interviewing. As further evidence of the representativeness of the sample chosen by the above methods, characteristics of the sample were compared to characteristics of the total Orange County population using the 1980 Census. On the basis of age, household composition, marital status, household size, and homeownership, the sample is representative of the population of Orange County. Characteristics of the 1982, 1983, and 1984 Orange County Annual Survey samples were also contrasted with the characteristics of the 1985 orange County Annual Survey sample. Marital status, ethnicity, age, sex, and education were closely comparable in the four surveys. The sampling error for this survey is plus or minus three percentage points. This means that if this survey were to be repeated 100 times, in 95 out of the 100 times the answers obtained for a particular question would match those we obtained in this survey within three points. The sampling error for any particular subgroup would be greater. These calculations assume that the data were collected under ideal circumstances. Since there are a large number of practical problems in conducting social surveys, the actual sampling error for any particular result might be slightly higher.


University of California, Irvine,



Orange County (Calif.)