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Call for Proposals: TESS's Short Studies Program

TESS’s Short Studies Program (SSP) is a new mechanism for fielding very brief population-based survey experiments.  A “short study” is a survey experiment that is no more than 3 items (i.e., questions/stimuli) in length (not including the standard demographic variables that are delivered as part of every TESS study).  The Short Studies Program allows/requires such projects to be proposed using an abbreviated proposal (no more than 2 pages in length single spaced, plus proposed items and any references), which will be subject to an expedited review process. Successful proposals submitted to the SSP will be fielded on a general population sample of at least 2000 adults in the United States, using the same Internet-based platform as other TESS studies (the GfK KnowledgePanel).

 

How do I submit to the Short Studies Program?
What are formatting guidelines for Short Studies Program proposals?
Do projects have to be experiments?
Do I have to get IRB approval for my short study?
How will projects be reviewed?
How will my study be fielded?
How are special stimuli (video clips, news articles) counted as items?
What if I need more than 3 items or 2000 respondents?
What if my experiment requires a subsample rather than a general population sample?

 


How do I submit to the Short Studies Program?  

Proposals should be e-mailed to tess@tessexperiments.org, with the subject line “Short Study Proposal”.  Proposals for this Program should not be submitted through the TESS Manuscript Central site, and any proposals submitted through the Manuscript Central site will be treated as regular TESS proposals, not SSP proposals.


What are formatting guidelines for Short Studies Program proposals?  

Short study proposals must be 1-2 pages in length (single-spaced), plus the proposed items and any references included at the end as a separate page.  The experimental design of the study must be clear.  All proposals should include a title for the project on the first page, but no identifying information of the author.  Other information permitted as appendices to regular TESS proposals may also be appended to a Short Study proposal.  Proposals should be in PDF format.


Do projects have to be experiments?  

Yes. See here for an elaboration of what we mean by an experimental design.


Do I have to get IRB approval for my short study?  

Investigators for all TESS studies must receive appropriate approval from their institutional IRBs before we field their study.  Typically, investigators wait until after their study has been approved for fielding before pursuing IRB approval.

IRB support information from GfK (formerly Knowledge Networks)


How will projects be reviewed?  

While regular TESS proposals are externally reviewed, for purposes of expediency, we will typically review these projects internally -- that is, by the Principal Investigators and/or Associate Principal Investigators. Feedback on proposals apart from the decision likewise should be expected to be brief and quick.


How will my study be fielded?  

Short studies may be fielded in the same instrument as other short studies, or may be appended to the end of regular TESS survey experiments.  Randomization to conditions will be independent across all short studies.


How are special stimuli (video clips, news articles) counted as items?  

For regular TESS proposals, the ultimate arbiter of length for any TESS study are length determinations made by our survey vendor (GfK) for pricing studies.  For purposes here, a stimulus will be considered one item unless its estimated time of administration is longer than 45 seconds, in which case it will be counted as more than one item.  A stimulus that requires more than 90 seconds to administer needs to be submitted using the regular TESS mechanism rather than the Short Study Program.


What if I need more than 3 items or 2000 respondents?  

SSP is a special mechanism of the larger TESS project, which allows proposals of larger projects (although still subject to rigorous size limits).  More information about TESS is available at www.tessexperiments.org.


What if my experiment requires a subsample rather than a general population sample?

For ease of fielding, the Short Studies Program is for projects that involve no special subsampling.  If you have a short study that requires subsampling, you should submit a regular proposal using our regular mechanism.

 


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