October Supplement Survey

I am using data from the 1984 and 1989 October Supplement Survey. Specifically, I am using the Computer and Internet Survey data. I want computer usage for these two months, by gender, education, race, age, occupation, union status, hours and region. I am perusing the CIWRKCMP variable – “indicates whether the respondent uses a computer directly at work.” I have three questions regarding this:

  1. Which weights should I use? This link (IPUMS CPS) instructs users to use CISUPPWT as the weight. However, this page in the forum (Which weights to use with October/Education supplement?) asks us to use this weight. Which one is correct?

  2. How should I apply this weight to adjust CIWRKCMP? I am using R and Stata.

  3. Where can I get the data sorted by the categories listed above?

The IPUMS CPS link that you provide notes that WTSUPP was replaced by IPUMS in 2018 with supplement specific weights (i.e. CISUPPWT replaced WTSUPP for respondents to the Computer and Internet Use supplement). The weights were reallocated for all samples before 2018 and all subsequent weights followed this new procedure. While the Computer and Internet Use supplement questions (such as CIWRKCMP) have primarily appeared as a portion of the October Education supplement, these questions have their own sample design and therefore need to be analyzed using their own weights. Researchers analyzing respondents to the 1984 and 1989 Computer and Internet Use supplements should use CISUPPWT. You can find more information about this supplement in the sample notes.

Since the CPS microdata doesn’t include any sample design variables (strata or PSU clusters), running the analysis with weights in Stata or R is very straightforward. In Stata, you can add the option [pweight=cisuppwt] to the end of any regression and tabulation command. In R (using the ipumsr package), you should use the as_data function to enter the weights:

data ← as_survey(data, weight = CISUPPWT, nest = TRUE)

You can then run analyses using the summarise function. More sample Stata and R code is provided in the IPUMS training exercises.

To tabulate CIWRKCMP by SEX, EDUC (education), RACE, AGE, OCC (occupation), UNION (union status), STATEFIP (state of residence), and UHRSWORK1 (hours usually worked per week at main job) you will need to add the corresponding variable to your extract. Since IPUMS CPS data are individual-level microdata, the data will not be automatically sorted by category. Each record will be an individual respondent and you will need to tabulate the variables that you are interested in. Note that with analyses using the variable UNION, you will need to substitute CISUPPWT with EARNWT since respondents to this question form a subsample of the October supplement.