Data Collection Notes
A pretest exercise was carried out on NDHS with a view to ensuring that the questions were in a logical sequence, that the translations were comprehensible, appropriate and meaningful, and that the preceded answers were adequate. The pretest was conducted in January and February of 1990. Fieldwork was conducted in both urban and rural EAs and in each of the four regions, and all language questionnaires were tested.
Training lasted two weeks and was comprised of classroom training on the questionnaires and field practice. Invited for the first two days of the training were the FOS regional and state officers from the seven pretest states namely: Anambra, Benue, Boruo, Cross River, Kano, Lagos, and Oyo. Those involved in the intensive training were: six senior officers from FOS headquarters in Lagos, and three female interviewers and one FOS supervisor from each pretest state. In all, 21 newly recruited interviewers and 7 FOS supervisors participated in the pretest training exercise. DHS staffhandled the training on the questionnaire and supervised the field practice. At the end of training, the field staff went back to their respective states for the pretest fieldwork which lasted two weeks. At the end of the fieldwork, the interviewers and supervisors came back to Lagos for a debriefing exercise and all their experiences during the fieldwork were related. The six senior officers and the DHS staff who supervised the data collection in the states also related their experiences. All these experiences were used to improve the quality of the final version of the questionnaire.
RECRUITMENT OF FIELD STAFF
The first activity before the commencement of the main survey data collection was the recruitment of interviewers and supervisors, which took place in March 1990 in the southern states, and in June 1990 in the northern states. The recruitment exercise in each state was done by NDHS project staff in the Lagos headquarters, with the assistance of FOS regional and state officers. Candidates were selected for maturity, minimum educational qualification of West African School Certificate or the General Certificate o f Education (ordinary level), ability to read and speak one of the major Nigerian languages chosen for NDHS, and willingness to work in the field for several months.
In all, 157 female candidates were recruited as interviewers and 30 FOS staff were selected as supervisors, including some who took part in the pretest exercise. At the end of four weeks intensive training, 125 female candidates (100 interviewers and 25 editors) and 25 supervisors were finally selected for the fieldwork. Assessment tests were used in selecting candidates.
TRAINING OF FIELD STAFF
The training of field staff was carried out at four separate centres and in two phases, one in the North and one in the South. The southem training phase took place in Ibadan and Enugu, between March and April 1990. Two teams of two staff persons from FOS and one from DHS conducted the training at the centres. The same trainers conducted the northern phase of the training, which took place at Kaduna and Jos, between June and July 1990. The four FOS staff persons handled both training on the questionnaires and field practice, while DHS staff were available for back-up and technical assistance.
Apart from the interviewers and supervisors who attended the 4-week training sessions, the FOS regional and state officers who served as field coordinators in their respective regions and states were also present at each centre for the first two days of the training. Four data processing officers from FOS headquarters in Lagos attended the training in Ibadan for two weeks, to familiarise themselves with the questionnaire and their responsibilities as data entry personnel for the survey. All training participants were provided accommodations in hotels, and the conference halls in these hotels were the venue for training.
Each training session lasted four weeks. The first two weeks were devoted to classroom lectures, demonstrations of interviewing techniques, and instruction on how to complete the questionnaires and assignment sheets, using the instruction manuals as guides. By the third week of training, interviewers were grouped by language, with their supervisors, for practice reading the questionnaires and role playing.
The fourth week was devoted to practice fieldwork in non-NDHS EAs near the training centre. The interviewers were assigned households to be interviewed in the local language. The completed questionnaires for practice fieldwork were checked by the trainers and supervisors and errors were discussed during the evening sessions before proceeding to the next EA. During training, a series of assessment tests was given to the interviewers and supervisors. These tests were graded and the results were used in selecting interviewers and supervisors; those candidates who had a better grasp of the questionnaire, and were adept at detecting errors in completed questionnaires, were designated as field editors.
Two guest lecturers were invited to each training centre. A staff person from the Planned Parenthood Federation of Nigeria (PPFN) lectured on family planning methods and sources where methods can be obtained, and a staff person from Federal/State Ministry of Health, Primary Health Care Unit lectured on child health and immunisation.
Anthropometry was taught over a two-week period, altemating training time with work on other sections of the individual questionnaire. In the southern phase, training was conducted by a DHS consultant on anthropometry, who was assisted by two FOS staff. In the northern phase, the two FOS staff conducted the anthropometric training. Arrangements were made with nurseries, day care centres, and hospitals for practice measuring of infants and children. All trainees received anthropometric training.
COMPOSITION OF THE FIELDWORK TEAMS
At the end of the one-month training course, the fieldworkers were selected from the larger pool of trainees. Over the four training sites, a total of 100 interviewers and 25 field editors were selected. Fieldwork teams were composed of four female interviewers, one female editor, one male or female supervisor, and one driver. In all, a total of 25 teams were engaged for the main survey. Fifteen teams were used in the southern phase of fieldwork (9 in the Southwest and 6 in the Southeast), and 10 teams were used in the nortbem phase (5 in the Northwest and 5 in the Northeast).
MAIN SURVEY FIELDWORK
The main survey fieldwork commenced immediately after training. The first week of fieldwork was conducted in the states where training took place, covering both urban and rural EAs; one EA per team.
The first week of fieldwork was done in the South in April 1990 and in the North in July 1990. At the end of the first week, a debriefing session was held, during which field staff and trainers related their experiences and problems. There were question and answer sessions and solutions to problems were discussed. The procedures and fieldwork plan and itinerary were discussed before the teams were posted to their respective states for the fieldwork.
Fieldwork for the main survey was conducted in the South between April and July and in the North between July and October 1990.
Thirty-four households were selected for interview in each EA (selection of households was done in the Lagos office from household listings). Women eligible for the individualinterview were identi fled during the household interview. Team supervisors located the housing units and assigned selected households to the interviewers. Completed household and individual questionnaires were handed over to the field editor, who checked to ensure that all relevant questions were correctly recorded, that the skip instructions were properly followed, and that responses were internally consistent. This field editing was done before the team left the EA so that the interviewer could return to the respondent to resolve any errors. Each questionnaire was field edited prior to being sent to the office in Lagos for data entry.
All completed records were then tied together for submission to the FOS state office, for submission to Lagos headquarters.