Imputation Methods for Missing Categorical Questionnaire Data: A Comparison of Approaches
Volume 8, Issue 3 (2010), pp. 361–378
Pub. online: 10 July 2021 Type: Research Article Open Access
10 July 2021
10 July 2021
Abstract: Missing data are a common problem for researchers working with surveys and other types of questionnaires. Often, respondents do not respond to one or more items, making the conduct of statistical analyses, as well as the calculation of scores difficult. A number of methods have been developed for dealing with missing data, though most of these have focused on continuous variables. It is not clear that these techniques for imputation are appropriate for the categorical items that make up surveys. However, methods of imputation specifically designed for categorical data are either limited in terms of the number of variables they can accommodate, or have not been fully compared with the continuous data approaches used with categorical variables. The goal of the current study was to compare the performance of these explicitly categorical imputation approaches with the more well established continuous method used with categorical item responses. Results of the simulation study based on real data demonstrate that the continuous based imputation approach and a categorical method based on stochastic regression appear to perform well in terms of creating data that match the complete datasets in terms of logistic regression results.