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Appendix C: Data Collection Methodology, Tools, Counts and Response Rates

There were four streams of data collection throughout the project: 1) two online surveys (base and post); 2) data from CONNECTIONS (central child welfare information system); 3) district teleconferences; and 4) district questionnaires.

Online Surveys

Two separate surveys, a baseline and post-pilot survey, were administered. The surveys collected data about respondents’ perceptions and attitudes using the laptop or tablet PC within several areas of CPS work – work practice, work time, demographic information, mobility/location, skill and stress levels, technology acceptance, training, and use of technology. The surveys were developed over a period of a several months and a pre-survey was tested. The surveys were modified based on the pilot survey results and the project team’s knowledge and understanding of CPS work. The online surveys were developed and administered through commercial software (Survey Monkey).

Districts were asked to provide the names, email addresses, and titles of participating CPS caseworkers and supervisors. Data reported in the survey represents responses from the caseworkers only. Personalized survey invitations were emailed to participants. The baseline survey was administered prior the deployment of laptops or tablet PCs to participating caseworkers. The baseline survey was open for three weeks starting on 9/21/07 and ending on 10/5/07.

The post-pilot survey was administered three months following the deployment of laptops. The survey was open for one week; starting on 1/3/08 and ending on 1/10/08. Data were collected from three new thematic categories: the impact of laptops on caseworkers’ daily activities, mobility-related issues, and technical difficulties experienced during the pilot period. Data quality checks were performed and the data were recoded as needed.

Overall, there were 448 CPS caseworkers that participated in this study. Supervisors also participated in the study but their survey responses were not included in the results. This was done because the number of supervisors participating in the pilot were not representative across districts and the total number of supervisors responding represented a number too low to report.

The response rate for the baseline survey was 74% (n = 331), while the response rate for the post- pilot survey was 61% (n = 275). The total number of caseworkers that took both surveys was 234, resulting in a response rate of 52%. The table below shows the number of caseworkers and the response rates for each of the participating districts.

Table 2 – Response Rates by Districts
Table 2 – Response Rates by Districts