Empirical has a proprietary, secure, web-based survey tool, called SurveyCenter,® which it uses to collect qualitative and quantitative information from the participants involved in a study. We typically send out periodic surveys over the duration of a study and have an exceptionally high response rate (over 90% at the teacher level), as we follow up non-responses with email, fax, and phone calls—including contact with principals and other administrators—in order to find effective channels of communication.
Our tools are unique in aggregating responses from the same participant across multiple surveys across the course of a study. The tools also facilitate generating composite variables based on combinations of responses. To date, we have written hundreds of surveys for thousands of recipients, with each respondent answering as many as nine monthly surveys per year. We have developed a manual of style for surveys, and we maintain a data bank of questions that have been tested and refined for use in various applications.