This is a short list of our most frequently asked questions. For more information about the Social Mission Metrics Initiative, please contact us.
COMPLETING THE SURVEY: WHY DO THE PAPER AND ONLINE SURVEYS APPEAR DIFFERENT? A paper version of the survey is provided to schools for reference. Schools also have the option to complete the survey on paper instead of through the online platform if they prefer. While this is the same survey, in some cases questions in the online platform may be "hidden" if they are not applicable to your school. For example, if you state your school has not conducted and does not have access to a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA), subsequent questions regarding how your school uses a CHNA will not be shown to you in the online platform. While the paper version of the survey will show you both questions, it will direct you to only answer questions that are relevant based on your responses to antecedent questions. Therefore the platform you choose to complete the survey in will not affect the questions you complete or your feedback in any way.
WHAT IS the SOCIAL MISSION metrics initiative?
The Social Mission Metrics Initiative is a project aimed to create a set of metrics to measure social mission in dental, medical, and nursing schools across the United States.
WHAT IS SOCIAL MISSION?
The social mission of a health professions school is the contribution of the school in its mission, programs, and the performance of its graduates, faculty and leadership in advancing health equity and addressing the health disparities of the society in which it exists.
WHAT IS THE SOCIAL MISSION METRICS SELF-ASSESSMENT?
The Social Mission Self-Assessment is a survey aimed to give health professions school leaders an overview of the state of social mission at their schools. It is an online questionnaire that is completed by the dean or other school leader of a medical, dental, or nursing school.
WILL MY SCHOOL BE RANKED?
No, your school will not be ranked. The Social Mission Metrics Initiative is not designed to rank schools based on social mission. There will be no publicly or privately available ranking of participating schools. This exercise is intended to increase school’s awareness of their own social mission.
WHY SHOULD I COMPLETE THE SELF-ASSESSMENT?
This is an area that has not been widely measured in the past, but is of high importance to educators, students, and national leaders in health education. By participating, you will have the opportunity to 1) review the social mission aspects of your school’s program, and 2) receive confidential feedback on your school’s social mission promoting activities in comparison to other participating institutions.
IS THE SELF-ASSESSMENT A VALIDATED TOOL?
While the survey has not been formally validated, internal analyses have shown survey results correspond with other external initiatives related to Social Mission and Social Accountability. Additionally, factor analysis demonstrates the coherence of related items within the questionnaire and the distinctiveness of the areas being measured. With increasing school participation, additional validation activities will be undertaken.
HOW DO I COMPLETE THE SELF-ASSESSMENT?
Once you indicate to the study team your interest in participating, you will receive a unique link to the Self-Assessment. The survey is completed online and submitted confidentially to the GWHWI.
Data will be required from several school sources. The school response should be led by a senior member of the school leadership: the dean, associate/assistant dean, or a senior administrator who will be in a position to request data from various internal sources.
WHY DO THE PAPER AND ONLINE SURVEYS APPEAR DIFFERENT?
A paper version of the survey is provided to schools for reference. Schools also have the option to complete the survey on paper instead of through the online platform if they prefer. While this is the same survey, in some cases questions in the online platform may be "hidden" if they are not applicable to your school. For example, if you state your school has not conducted and does not have access to a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA), subsequent questions regarding how your school uses a CHNA will not be shown to you in the online platform. While the paper version of the survey will show you both questions, it will direct you to only answer questions that are relevant based on your responses to antecedent questions. Therefore the platform you choose to complete the survey in will not affect the questions you complete or your feedback in any way.
HOW LONG WILL THE SELF-ASSESSMENT TAKE TO COMPLETE?
Based on field tests of the survey, we estimate that this will take 3-5 hours to complete. The time may vary depending on the availability of data at your institution.
HOW CAN STUDENTS GET INVOLVED?
During our pilot test, several schools had students help with data collection, allowing them to be active partners in understanding the school’s social mission. If you are a student, reach out to the leadership at your school to find out if they are participating in the Social Mission Metrics self-assessment, and if not, encourage them to do so. Contact us if you would like to learn more.
WHAT IF I DON’T KNOW THE ANSWER?
You can select the answer choice “Don’t Know” for questions to which you do not know the answer. Where you might be uncertain, we would ask you to consider giving your best estimate.
WHAT IF I DON’T WISH TO SHARE AN ANSWER?
Participation is strictly voluntary and if there is any requested information that you or your school does not wish to share, please leave the question blank. It would be beneficial for the ongoing development of the initiative to receive feedback about questions you prefer not to answer. It would be helpful if you could place a comment as to why the question was problematic in the final, open ended question at the end of the survey.
WHAT WILL BE DONE WITH THE RESULTS?
After survey completion by participating schools, the Social Mission Metrics team will send you a confidential package with your results and how they compare to all schools and similar participating schools. School responses may also be aggregated to determine the current status of social mission across health professions schools in the United States.
WHY ARE ASSOCIATE’S DEGREE NURSING PROGRAMS NOT INCLUDED?
Due to the very large number of nursing schools across the country, this phase of the initiative is limited to bachelor’s and master’s level degree programs. The Social Mission Metrics Initiative may be expanded in the future to include more nursing schools and other health professions schools.
This work is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Previous work in developing the survey tool was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
HOW WILL THE CONFIDENTIALITY OF MY ANSWERS BE PROTECTED?
Your responses will only be viewed by the study team at The George Washington University Health Workforce Institute. You will NOT receive any information on the responses of other schools and no other schools will receive information on your responses. No information on a particular school’s standing will be shared or published without explicit consent from that school.
WHO DO I CONTACT FOR ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?
Please contact Julie Orban, Research Scientist, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone at 202-994-4315 with any questions.