Assigning metabolic equivalent (MET) values to the 2002 Census Occupational Classification System

Tudor-Locke, Catrine, Ainsworth, Barbara E., Washington, Tracy L., & Troiano, Richard P. (2011) Assigning metabolic equivalent (MET) values to the 2002 Census Occupational Classification System. Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 8(4), pp. 581-586.

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Background: The Current Population Survey (CPS) and the American Time Use Survey (ATUS) use the 2002 census occupation system to classify workers into 509 separate occupations arranged into 22 major occupational categories. Methods: We describe the methods and rationale for assigning detailed MET estimates to occupations and present population estimates (comparing outputs generated by analysis of previously published summary MET estimates to the detailed MET estimates) of intensities of occupational activity using the 2003 ATUS data comprised of 20,720 respondents, 5,323 (2,917 males and 2,406 females) of whom reported working 6+ hours at their primary occupation on their assigned reporting day. Results: Analysis using the summary MET estimates resulted in 4% more workers in sedentary occupations, 6% more in light, 7% less in moderate, and 3% less in vigorous compared to using the detailed MET estimates. The detailed estimates are more sensitive to identifying individuals who do any occupational activity that is moderate or vigorous in intensity resulting in fewer workers in sedentary and light intensity occupations. Conclusions: Since CPS/ATUS regularly captures occupation data it will be possible to track prevalence of the different intensity levels of occupations. Updates will be required with inevitable adjustments to future occupational classification systems.

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ID Code: 41174
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Energy Expenditure, Physical Activity, Exercise
ISSN: 1543-3080
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > HUMAN MOVEMENT AND SPORTS SCIENCE (110600)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Human Kinetics, Inc.
Deposited On: 11 Apr 2011 06:21
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2011 20:57

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