A comparison of reliability measures for continuous and discontinuous recording methods: Inflated agreement scores with partial interval recording and momentary time sampling for duration events

John T. Rapp, Regina A. Carroll, Lindsay Stangeland, Greg Swanson, William J. Higgins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


The authors evaluated the extent to which interobserver agreement (IOA) scores, using the block-by-block method for events scored with continuous duration recording (CDR), were higher when the data from the same sessions were converted to discontinuous methods. Sessions with IOA scores of 89% or less with CDR were rescored using 10-s partial interval recording (PIR) and 10-s momentary time sampling (MTS). Results indicated that IOA scores for 10-s PIR and 10-s MTS were consistently higher than IOA scores based on CDR for the same sessions. Specifically, 10-s MTS provided higher overestimations for low-duration events, whereas 10-s PIR produced higher overestimations for moderate- and high-duration events. Implications for researchers and clinicians are briefly discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)389-402
Number of pages14
JournalBehavior Modification
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2011



  • continuous duration recording
  • interobserver agreement
  • momentary time sampling
  • partial interval recording

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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