Surveys not available

Hi there!

Our participant (51430) in study 2241 has not received any of the surveys today to complete besides one. The study duration is 12 days and they should receive 5 surveys each day; today is their 12th day but only one survey has been made available to them. Is there a way to know why this is the case? Thank you.

Hi @marim.adel

I believe this is the same issue your colleague, Stella Zhang, also raised. The problem is that when you set the study duration as 12 days, the system considers exactly 12 days, i.e. 12 * 24 hours. But I guess you expected 12 complete days from the end of the registration dates.

To get this behaviour, you need to set the study to 13 days. But this will only impact future participants. For the past participants, you need to manually adjust their “End Date”, as explained in our documentation.

But in your case, as your study is already in the field, things will get a bit more complicated. When you change study configuration for a participant, you need to make sure they update their study right away. Otherwise, if they remain offline or disconnected from Ethica server, they may not receive your changes.

Another thing to consider is that you need to make sure you have properly configured your surveys’ triggering logics.

Overall, I suggest to carefully check the documentation and test everything before making changes to make sure the system behaves exactly as you expect.

Hope it helps,

Hi @m.hashemian, thanks so much for the response!

We have changed the study duration from 12 days to 13 days, and we are aware that those already enrolled in the study prior to this change will not receive these changes if we do not manually change their study configuration. We decided not to manually change the study duration for anyone, however, we noticed that some participants (who were enrolled before we made the change to study duration) are indeed receiving surveys on what would be the 13th day. Some only get surveys until noon, and some receive the full 13th day of surveys. Can you let us know why that might be?

Thanks in advance!

Hi @ruixi.zhang

Can you mention one example participant ID who had participation duration of 12 days before and now changed to 13 days?


Hi @m.hashemian,

To clarify, we want our participants to enrol and complete activity 14833 on day 1, and then complete activity 14549 five times a day for 12 days. Prior to March 24th, we had set the study duration to 12 days, which means participants were completing activity 14833 on day 1, but only receiving 11 days of activity 14549 to complete.

However, participant 51309 enrolled on March 14th, which is 10 days before we made the change to study duration from 12 days to 13 days. They completed a total of 59 surveys on activity 14549, which is not possible should they receive 5 surveys for 11 days. Furthermore, they began responding to activity 14549 on March 15th, and ended on March 26th, which would be 12 days. These 12 days in addition to their enrolment and response to activity 14833 on March 14th, would total 13 days in the study. There are several other instances of this occurring.

Please let me know if you require additional information, and thanks for your help so far.

Hi @ruixi.zhang

I think the problem is that you are mixing two issues here:

  1. The participation period is 12 or 13 days.
  2. Within the participation period, how many surveys the participant receives.

You mentioned (or at least was my impression) that while you changed participation period from 12 to 13, some participants before this change ended up being in the study for 13 days. This is impossible. For example, 51309 joined the study on 2022-03-15 02:40:34.09+00 and her participation is scheduled until 2022-03-27 02:40:34.09+00 which counts to exactly 12 days, not 13 days.

Now with that out of the way, we can focus on “how many surveys they get if they are part of the study for 12 days”. As I said in my previous comment, 12 days mean 12 * 24 hours. But you are thinking as if 12 days are 12 full calendar days. These two are not always equal. If the participant joins on mid-night, they will get 12 full calendar days and your configuration would be correct. If the participant joins at noon, for example, they will get 11 full calendar days and 2 half-days. Correct?

Now put the above in the Triggering Logic configuration you have specified for your study, and you will see why some people with 12-participation-days got 59 surveys, and some others did not.

Hope it helps,

Hi @m.hashemian,

Thanks for the clarification. So it sounds like people who enrol later in the day will receive more surveys than people who enrol earlier in the day, even if we have one buffer day of activity 14833? How can we make sure that people are getting the same number of surveys regardless of their time of enrolment? Because we are compensating people based on how many surveys they complete, we want to make sure everyone has equal opportunity to get the highest compensation.

Attached is a screenshot of our current triggering logic for activity 14549. We have four more triggering logics set in addition to this one at 12:00, 15:00, 18:00, and 21:00, all other details are the same. Would this be sufficient to ensure people are ALL getting 60 14549 surveys over 12 days, after day one with just 14833 and regardless of time of registration?

Thanks again.

So it sounds like people who enrol later in the day will receive more surveys than people who enrol earlier in the day, even if we have one buffer day of activity 14833?

I’m not sure if I understood what “buffer day” means here really. I suggest you check the “Test the Schedule” option of the Triggering logic. That tells you assuming the participant joins at time T, when they receive the surveys.

How can we make sure that people are getting the same number of surveys regardless of their time of enrolment?

Well, this is what our documentation on Triggering Logic explains. I suggest you read it there.