Dear Respondents,

We wanted to express our deepest appreciation for your assistance and cooperation in completing your interview for the 25-year anniversary and 5th wave of the Americans’ Changing Lives Study. We are delighted to report that we were able to complete interviews with 1427 of you! This translates to an incredible response rate of over 81% of the surviving members of the original 3,617 ACL respondents interviewed in 1986. We conducted 108 of these interviews with proxy reporters on behalf of survivors no longer able to be interviewed themselves.

This result exceeds our fondest expectations, thanks to you. To our knowledge, it is better than what has been achieved before in a 25-year national survey of the same respondents, especially when we had not spoken in person with you for about 10 years. Amazingly, we even were able to find and interview some of you whom we had not talked with since 1986 or 1989!

We will endeavor to use the information you have given us to describe and explain how and why the health of American adults has been changing over the past quarter century. This is a time when we have seen great progress in health for some, but, unfortunately, not for all. The focus of our work in ACL is to inform scientists, policymakers and the general public regarding what needs to be done to give every American the longest and healthiest life that she or he is capable of having. As always, it is our highest priority to do this while maintaining your individual confidentiality and privacy. Without your assistance and cooperation over the past quarter century, we could do none of this.

We look forward to keeping in touch with you over the coming years, and, hopefully, talking with you again in the future. In the interim, feel free to contact us by mail, phone (866-473-0006) or by visiting this website where you will be able to find the latest news on the ACL study.

Our best wishes to you and yours for the rest of 2012 and beyond.


James S. House

Project Director

Angus Campbell Distinguished University Professor of

Survey Research, Public Policy, and Sociology

University of Michigan

Sarah Burgard

Co-Project Director

Professor of Sociology

and ISR Population Studies Center

University of Michigan



We also want to assure you that we have continued to take elaborate measures to ensure each participant's privacy and confidentiality. Each of our professional interviewers and researchers is required to sign a yearly Oath of Confidentiality. Data obtained through this website will be kept strictly confidential. Data submitted through this web form cannot be retrieved from this website. Results from our study are only reported in statistical form which will not permit any identification of individuals participating in our study.

Update your Respondent Contact Information

Obtaining data on the changes that occur for our original group of study participants is what makes our study unique and valuable to policymakers and scientists across the country and around the world. Thus, it is important that we do not lose contact with you. Please fill out the confidential form below to update your contact information. Thank you!

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