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Behavioral Frequency Judgments: An Accessibility-Diagnosticity Framework


  • Menon, Geeta
  • Raghubir, Priya
  • Schwarz, Norbert


Marketing research surveys often elicit behavioral frequency reports. When estimating the number of times a respondent engages in a behavior, s/he may use information about the behavior stored in memory, information provided by the response context, or both. Based on an accessibility-diagnosticity framework, we theorize that the probability of using context-based information in forming a frequency judgment is inversely proportional to the diagnosticity of the alternative inputs accessible in memory. That is, when memory-based information is accessible and diagnostic, contextual information is not used; when memory-based information is accessible but not diagnostic, the use of contextual information depends on its perceived diagnosticity. Finally, when memory-based information is not accessible, contextual information is used even when its diagnosticity is questionable. The results of three experiments support this model. Theoretical implications and recommendations for questionnaire design are discussed. Copyright 1995 by the University of Chicago.

Suggested Citation

  • Menon, Geeta & Raghubir, Priya & Schwarz, Norbert, 1995. " Behavioral Frequency Judgments: An Accessibility-Diagnosticity Framework," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(2), pages 212-228, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:jconrs:v:22:y:1995:i:2:p:212-28

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    Cited by:

    1. David Comerford & Liam Delaney & Colm Harmon, 2009. "Experimental Tests of Survey Responses to Expenditure Questions," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 30(Special I), pages 419-433, December.
    2. Toepoel, V. & Vis, C.M. & Das, J.W.M. & van Soest, A.H.O., 2006. "Design of Web Questionnaires : An Information Processing Perspective for the Effect of Response Categories," Discussion Paper 2006-19, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    3. repec:eee:ijrema:v:29:y:2012:i:2:p:148-166 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Ivar Krumpal & Heiko Rauhut & Dorothea Böhr & Elias Naumann, 2011. "The framing of risks and the communication of subjective probabilities for victimizations," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 45(6), pages 1331-1348, October.
    5. Béatrice Parguel & Florence Benoît-Moreau & Fabrice Larceneux, 2011. "How Sustainability Ratings Might Deter ‘Greenwashing’: A Closer Look at Ethical Corporate Communication," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 102(1), pages 15-28, August.
    6. repec:eee:jbrese:v:87:y:2018:i:c:p:36-45 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Fiedler, John L. & Mwangi, Dena M., 2016. "Improving household consumption and expenditure surveys’ food consumption metrics: Developing a strategic approach to the unfinished agenda:," IFPRI discussion papers 1570, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    8. Philippe Verduyn & Francis Tuerlinckx & Kirsty Van Gorp, 2013. "Measuring the duration of emotional experience: the influence of actual duration and response format," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 47(5), pages 2557-2567, August.
    9. Menon, Geeta & Kyung, Ellie J. & Agrawal, Nidhi, 2009. "Biases in social comparisons: Optimism or pessimism?," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 39-52, January.
    10. repec:eee:joreco:v:28:y:2016:i:c:p:45-53 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Stocké, Volker, 2003. "Measuring information accessibility and predicting response-effects : the validity of response-certainties and response-latencies," Papers 03-33, Sonderforschungsbreich 504.
    12. repec:kap:mktlet:v:28:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s11002-016-9416-z is not listed on IDEAS

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