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May 15 -- The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) invites comments to OMB by June 14, 2024 concerning the proposed revision of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979.

The National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79) is a representative national sample of persons who were born in the years 1957 to 1964 and lived in the U.S. in 1979. These respondents were ages 14 to 22 when the first round of interviews began in 1979; they will be ages 59 to 66 when the planned round thirty-one of interview is conducted in 2024. One of the goals of DOL is to produce and disseminate timely, accurate, and relevant information about the U.S. labor force. The BLS contributes to this goal by gathering information about the labor force and labor market and disseminating it to policymakers and the public so that participants in those markets can make more informed, and thus more efficient, choices. Research based on the NLSY79 contributes to the formation of national policy in the areas of education, training, employment programs, and school-to-work transitions.

This Information Collection Request (ICR) is a revision of a currently approved collection seeking to obtain clearance for the main fielding of Round 31 of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79). The sample includes 9,964 persons who were 57 to 64 years old on December 31, 2021. Approximately 13 percent of the sample members are deceased. The NLSY79 is a representative national sample of adults who were born in the years 1957 to 1964 and lived in the U.S. when the survey began in 1979. The sample contains an overrepresentation of Black and Hispanic respondents to include a sufficient sample size to permit racial and ethnic analytical comparisons. Appropriate weights have been developed so that the sample components can be combined in a manner to aggregate to the overall U.S. population of the same ages, excluding those who have immigrated since 1978.

The main NLSY79 is funded primarily by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS contracts with Center for Human Resource Research (CHRR) at The Ohio State University and the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago to conduct the survey. NORC handles the interviewing, initial data preparation, and weighting. Questionnaire design, additional data cleanup and preparation, development of documentation, and preparation of data files are handled by CHRR.

Through 1984, the NLSY79 consisted of annual interviews with a national sample of 12,686 young men and women who were ages 14 to 21 as of December 31, 1978, with overrepresentation of Black, Hispanic, and economically disadvantaged non-Blacks/non-Hispanic populations. The sample also included 1,280 persons serving in the military in 1978. Starting in 1985, the military sample was reduced to 201 due to a cessation of funding from the Department of Defense.  Starting in 1991, interviews were discontinued with the 742 male and 901 female members of the economically disadvantaged non-Black/non-Hispanic sample.  This reduced the eligible pool of sample members to 9,964.  The NLSY79 was conducted annually from 1979 to 1994 and has been conducted every two years since 1994.

In addition to the regular interviews, several supplementary data-collection efforts completed during the early survey years greatly enhance the value of the survey to policymakers and researchers. The full Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) was administered to 94 percent of sample members. Also, for a large proportion of the sample, information has been collected about the characteristics of the last high school each respondent attended, as well as the courses taken, grades, and some other personal characteristics about the respondents while attending high school.

NLSY79 webpage https://www.bls.gov/nls/nlsy79.htm
NLSY79 submission to OMB: https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202404-1220-002 Click IC List for data collection instruments, View Supporting Statement for technical documentation. Submit comments through this site.
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2024-10554

For AEA members wishing to submit comments to OMB, the AEA Committee on Economic Statistics offers "A Primer on How to Respond to Calls for Comment on Federal Data Collections" at https://www.aeaweb.org/content/file?id=5806

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