Journal Articles

Hays, Ron D., Steven Martino, Julie A. Brown, Mike Cui, Paul Cleary, Sarah Gaillot, and Marc Elliot.  2014. Evaluation of a Care Coordination Measure for the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) Medicare Survey Medical Care Research and Review 71 (2): 192-202.

Abstract: There is widespread interest in assessing care coordination to improve overall care quality. We evaluated a five-item measure of care coordination included in the 2012 Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) Medicare survey (n = 326,194 respondents, 46% response rate). This measure includes patient reports of whether their personal doctor discusses their medicines, has medical records and other relevant information, and is informed about care from specialists, and whether the patient gets help in managing care and timely follow-up on test results. A one-factor categorical confirmatory factor analytic model indicated that five items constituted a coherent scale. Estimated health-plan-level reliability was 0.70 at about 102 responses per plan. The composite had a strong unique association with the CAHPS global rating of health care, controlling for the CAHPS core composite scores. This measure can be used to evaluate relative plan performance and characteristics associated with better care coordination.

Discussion Questions

  1. What specific performance measurements are identified in the study, as factors that the researchers want to measure through the use of survey research?
  2. Discuss the survey process utilized in the study.  Specifically, what was the sample, and how was the data collection process designed?
  3. Discuss the wording of the questions used.  Do the examples provided indicate that the questions were well-worded and measure what is intended?
  4. Please discuss how the use of survey research allows the researchers to assess care coordination as part of a strategy to improve overall care quality.


Louden, Jennifer Eno et al. 2008. Supervising Probationers With Mental Disorder. Criminal Justice and Behavior 35(7): 832 -847.  Results of an original survey of probation officers.

Abstract: Although many probation agencies have instituted specialty mental health caseloads, little is known about the policies and practices of these caseloads. The authors surveyed supervisors of 54 specialty and 20 traditional probation agencies. The survey yielded three key findings. First, most agencies lack formal policies on officers' supervision of probationers with mental illness (PMIs). Second, relative to traditional officers, specialty officers are more involved in supervising PMIs, meeting with PMIs more often, functioning as part of a treatment team, and using problem solving strategies. Third, although both agency types use graduated sanctions, traditional officers generally respond to PMIs' noncompliance with more punitive strategies than specialty officers. Implications for developing and evaluating these caseloads are discussed.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss why the authors used a survey to collect primary data from supervisors of probation agencies versus another data collection approach.  Why was this a sound strategy?
  2. Discuss the sampling strategy used by the researchers.  What procedures were used to solicit participation?
  3. Please discuss the key findings of the survey, and how the data may be used by agencies in the decision-making process.


Moore, Tara C., Joseph H. Wehby, Alexandra Hollo, Rachel E. Robertson, and Daniel M. Maggin. 2014. Teacher Reports of Student Health and Its Influence on Students’ School PerformanceJournal of Positive Behavior Interventions 16 (2): 112-122.

Abstract: Physical health may be an important variable that influences students’ behavioral and academic performance in school settings. Poor health status is hypothesized to negatively influence student performance even in the presence of evidence-based practices. In this study, teachers reported their perceptions of students’ health status as well as their perceptions of the relation of health status to classroom performance and programming considerations for a sample (N = 217) of elementary and middle school students identified as exhibiting problem behaviors. Results indicated inconsistencies between teachers’ perceptions of student health and school programming considerations. Limitations are presented along with implications for future research and practice.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Describe the survey research process in this study.  In particular, how was the survey used to answer the research questions being considered?
  2. Discuss how the survey was divided into sections, and how this strategy allowed the researchers to focus upon different areas of measurement.
  3. Please discuss the outcome of the survey and its utility in measuring perceptions of the influence of student health on school behavior.
  4. Please discuss any limitations that were identified in using this survey approach.  How should these be integrated into future studies?


Park, Heejung, Jean M. Twenge, and Patricia M. Greenfield.  2014. The Great Recession: Implications for Adolescent Values and Behavior. Social Psychological and Personality Science 5 (3): 310-318. 

Abstract: Based on Greenfield’s theory of social change and human development, we predicted that adolescents’ values, behaviors, and self-assessments would become more collectivistic and less individualistic during the Great Recession (2008–2010) compared to the prerecession period (2004-2006), thereby reversing long-term trends from the 1970s. Data came from Monitoring the Future, a nationally representative yearly survey of 12th graders. Concern for others and environmentalism increased from the prerecession period to recession, reversing long-term declines. Long-term trends toward increasing materialism partially reversed: Wanting a job making lots of money continued to increase, the increase in the importance of money leveled off, and the increase in desiring to own expensive material items reversed. Long-term trends toward increasingly positive self-views continued. Correlations with economic indicators (median income, employment rate) over the entire time period (1976–2010) showed that collectivism was high and individualism was low during times of economic deprivation, consistent with Greenfield’s theory.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Please discuss how the researchers of this study frame their use of survey research to answer their hypothesis on whether adolescents’ values, behaviors, and self-assessments would become less individualistic during the Great Recession from 2008-2010.
  2. Discuss what measures were used by the researchers to explore their questions of interest.
  3. Please discuss limitations in the study, specifically relating to the survey research approach that was utilized.  Were there any ways that it could have been improved, or are there any lessons for future studies?