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Baylor Religion Survey, Wave IV (2014)




Froese, P. (2020, March 3). Baylor Religion Survey, Wave IV (2014).


Wave IV of the Baylor Religion Survey (2014), also known as "The Values and Beliefs of the American Public - A National Study," was administered by Gallup and funded by the John Templeton Foundation. It covers topics of religious behaviors and attitudes; morality, gender roles, and politics; family and religiosity; sexual orientation; work; race and ethnicity; guns and society; surveillance; science and the supernatural; and basic demographics.

The ARDA has added five additional variables to the original data set to enhance the users' experience on our site.

Data File

Cases: 1572
Variables: 269
Weight Variable: WEIGHT

Sample data were weighted to minimize bias in the survey based estimates. The base weight assigned to each respondent in each stratum was equal to the inverse of the probability of selection (or the sampling fraction) for that stratum. The base weights were then adjusted for non-response by a non-response weight adjustment factor equal to the ratio of the sample size and the number of completed surveys in each stratum. The final step involved post-stratification weighting to restore proportionality among groups of the population that may have been overrepresented or underrepresented in the survey due to differential non-response or representation on the sample frame. In the process of post-stratification weighting, Gallup weighted the actual respondent database to match the known demographic characteristics of the U.S. adult population by geographic region (census region), age, gender, race/ethnicity, and education. Trimming of extreme weights were carried out to minimize the effect of large weights on sampling error. The target data for post-stratification weighting were obtained from the latest Current Population Survey (CPS) 2013 population projections.

Data Collection

January 15 - March 24, 2014

Original Survey (Instrument)

The Values and Beliefs of the American Public - A National Study

Funded By

The John Templeton Foundation

Collection Procedures

The 2014 administration of the Values and Beliefs of the American Public survey was fielded using a self-administered pen and paper methodology with mail based collection only. Gallup mailed out an initial 10,253 surveys with an invitation letter, return envelope, and $1 USD cash incentive on January 15th. Reminder postcards were mailed to all on January 27th, and a full cover letter, survey, and return envelope package was sent to those addresses remaining open on February 14th. Collection of completed interviews finished on March 24th 2014.

This methodology represents a significant change from the recruiting and panel based collection effort used in previous collections. Although the initial mail out is significantly larger, the representation of the American population is more accurate. This methodology covered Spanish speaking only households and also included Alaska and Hawaii in the data collection.

Sampling Procedures

The sample for this study was selected using ABS (Address Based Sample) methodology based on a simple stratified sample design. The mode of data collection was mail. Gallup obtained the ABS sample from the Marketing Systems Group (MSG), a database and survey sample vendor, who has access to the latest DSF (Delivery Sequence File) frame and generated the Sample for Gallup. The DSF of USPS (United States Postal Service) is a computerized database that contains all delivery point addresses, with the exception of general delivery where carrier route or P.O. Box delivery is not available and mail is held at a main post office for claim by recipients. The choice ABS sampling method was made to address the evolving coverage problems associated with telephone-based samples. Gallup obtained a total sample of 10,253 addresses nationwide from MSG and a total of 1,572 surveys were completed with an overall response rate of 15.3%.

The target population (of all adults nationwide) was stratified into 12 strata described Table 1 below. As shown in Table 1, strata were formed based on density of specific subgroups (like Hispanic, African, Younger population (18-34)) to ensure minimum coverage of these sub-populations in the sample. The determination of high density Hispanic, African American or younger population was based on information available at the census block group level. Sampling was done independently within each stratum and Table 1 below includes the sample size and the number of completed surveys for each of the 12 strata.

Principal Investigators

Paul Froese

Related Publications

Dougherty, K. D., Johnson B. R., and Polson E. C. (2007). Recovering the Lost: Remeasuring U.S. Religious Affiliation. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 46(4), 483-499.

Henderson, W. M., Fitz, B., & Mencken, F. C. (2017). Judgmental God Image, Social Embeddedness, and Social Trust among the Highly Religious in the United States. Journal of Contemporary Religion, 32(1), 1-14.

Nelson, J. J., & Uecker, J. E. (2018). Are Religious Parents More Satisfied Parents? Individual- and Couple-Level Religious Correlates of Parenting Satisfaction. Journal of Family Issues, 39(7), 1770-1796.

Citing the Data

When citing this study, the following information should be included:
Baylor University. 2014. The Baylor Religion Survey, Wave IV. Waco, TX: Baylor Institute for Studies of Religion [producer].

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