INFO-BC: Method – What is a DCE

A discrete choice experiment (DCE) asks people to choose their preferred option between two choices. In INFO-BC this means that the person taking the survey is presented with two imagined treatment profiles. The treatment profiles differ in terms of their characteristics, for example, a treatment may have a high or low level of nausea. The characteristics presented within all choices remain the same but their levels (i.e. how good or bad that characteristic is for a treatment) are different. By studying how people make choices in this situation we can better understand what is most important to patients in the real world. We are confident that the characteristics we have chosen to include in our questionnaire are important to patients because we have reviewed the relevant literature and spoken to patients face-to-face.

Our collaborators at HERU Aberdeen explain DCE’s below using a different example about how people make choices when choosing health clinics.

Thanks to Dr Luis Loría and Dr Verity Watson for their work creating this video.