Adapting vignettes for online social science survey research: eliciting realistic responses to the digital milieu
Consisting of brief and evocative scenarios, vignettes effectively elicit stimulus responses, examine individual cognitions, and explore novel or sensitive topics. While information and communication technologies have expanded research methods, methodological and ethical considerations for design and implementation of digital vignettes necessitate further attention. This paper considers adaptation of the vignette method to internet-based data collection – particularly with stigmatized and digitally-engaged populations. Critical to vignettes is reproduction of stimuli to elicit realistic responses to particular conditions. For digital vignettes, this includes successful replication of the digital milieu. This paper presents an illustrative example of a digital vignette scenario simulating social media in a mixed-methods, online survey study with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, and other sexual and/or gender minority (LGBTQIA+) youth (age 14–24). While digital vignettes may be an effective and appropriate social science research method, numerous methodological and ethical challenges must be considered prior to implementation.
McInroy, L. B., Beer, O. W. J. (2021). Adapting vignettes for online social science survey research: eliciting realistic responses to the digital milieu. International Journal of Social Research Methodology. https://www.doi.org/10.1080/13645579.2021.1901440