The reliability of the Alcohol Timeline Followback when administered by telephone and by computer

Drug Alcohol Depend. 1996 Sep;42(1):49-54. doi: 10.1016/0376-8716(96)01263-x.


The Alcohol Timeline Followback (TLFB) has been shown to be a psychometrically sound assessment instrument for obtaining retrospective daily estimates of alcohol consumption. These evaluations, however, have been limited to face-to-face paper-and-pencil interviews. As use of the TLFB method has increased, investigators have reported using the method to collect follow-up data by telephone. Also, as with many assessment instruments, a computerized version of the TLFB method has been developed. The psychometric characteristics of the TLFB method under these administration conditions have not been evaluated. This paper presents results from two studies showing that the Alcohol TLFB method can obtain reliable drinking data when administered over the telephone and by computer.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcohol Drinking / epidemiology*
  • Alcoholism / epidemiology
  • Alcoholism / rehabilitation
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Microcomputers*
  • Middle Aged
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sampling Studies
  • Telephone*
  • Truth Disclosure