The target population for the GSS was persons 15 years of age and over residing in Canada, excluding the following two groups:

  1. Residents of Yukon, Nunavut and the Northwest Territories
  2. Full-time residents of institutions

All survey respondents were contacted and interviewed by a land-based telephone. Households without land-based telephones were therefore excluded. In 2010, the proportion of households without telephone service was estimated at 1.1% (Residential Telephone Service Survey [RTSS], December 2010). Interviews were not conducted by cell phone, thus eliminating all individuals who had only cellular service. This group represents 13% of the population (RTSS, December 2010). Survey estimates were weighted to account for persons without telephones.

Data for Cycle 24 of the GSS were collected from January to December 2010 in six samples of two months each. The sample was evenly distributed over the 12 months and selected using the Elimination of Non-Working Banks technique, a Random Digit Dialling (RDD) method. Since time use differs each day of the week, the sample was distributed uniformly across all seven days. Each telephone number was therefore assigned to a "designated day". Cases were eligible for collection for two days following the designated day.

The response rate for Cycle 24 of the GSS was 55.2%. This was based on the 15,390 respondents who provided usable information in their diary.

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