Within the last decade, numerous online populations, such as SurveyMonkey ® and Amazon’s ® Mechanical Turk ®(MTurk), have been established allowing researchers to gather data involving diverse populations. These resources offer an alternative to traditional laboratory settings hosted at universities, where many studies utilize students as the available and accessible population. While these online portals do provide new opportunities, they also contain unique advantages and disadvantages. This paper synthesizes the advantages and disadvantages of using online populations to conduct research in the aviation field. Some of the advantages are: easier access to new populations, larger sample sizes, more balanced ratio of genders, lower cost, more timely data collection, reliable data, and anonymity of participants. Some of the disadvantages are: unrepresentative samples, lower response rates, financial motivation issues, limited access to certain portals, limited length of study, non-behavioral data, and lack of follow-up data. In addition, the authors share their personal experiences of using these portals and summarize previous literature researching online populations.
Rice, Stephen; Winter, Scott R.; Doherty, Shawn; and Milner, Mattie
"Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Internet-Based Survey Methods in Aviation-Related Research,"
Journal of Aviation Technology and Engineering:
1, Article 5.
Available at: https://doi.org/10.7771/2159-6670.1160