1. What is the purpose of the KIP Survey?
A biennial statewide student survey to assess the extent of alcohol, drug, and tobacco use, as well as associated risk factors, among 11 to 18–year-olds throughout Kentucky. Students in grades 6, 8, 10 and 12 are asked to complete a survey that will be used for research purposes only. Their responses to the survey are compiled to provide information to individual school districts. Results are utilized for program planning and to evaluate the impact of prevention efforts aimed at reducing substance use.
2. Are students required to complete the survey?
No. Participation in the KIP Survey is completely voluntary. Students are not penalized in any way if they refuse to participate.
This survey has been administered to many thousands of students across the state since 2003, and the vast majority have experienced little difficulty in answering the questions. Because answering questions about personal and sensitive behaviors can be uncomfortable, students are assured that they may skip any questions they do not want to answer. Students are also told that if, after completing the survey, they have any personal concerns, and they should talk to their school counselor, who can direct them to resources for consultation.
3. Will anyone know how individual students answered the questions?
No. Responses to the questions are confidential. Names do not appear on the survey forms and no one except the research evaluation staff will see the individual responses. The answers from all youth participants are summarized and it is impossible to identify individuals in the responses.
4. What kinds of questions are on the survey?
Examples of questions to be asked in the KIP Survey are listed below by subject.
- Alcohol, tobacco, and drug use: How often (if ever) have you smoked cigarettes in the past month (30 days)? On how many occasions (if any) have you had more than a sip or two of beer, wine, or hard liquor (for example, vodka, whiskey or gin) during the last 30 days? How often (if ever) have you smoked marijuana?
- Attitudes toward alcohol and drug use: How wrong do you think it is for someone your age to drink beer, wine, or hard liquor (for example, vodka, whiskey or gin)? How wrong do you think it is for someone your age to smoke marijuana? In the past 30 days, how many times did you speak with a friend about a personal or family problem?
- Mental health: During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel that everything was an effort? Have you ever cut or harmed yourself on purpose?
- Bullying, school safety and gambling: How safe do you feel at school? During the past year (12 months), have you been bullied on school property? How often in the past year (12 months) have you gambled at school, church or community events?
5. How accurate is the KIP Survey?
Dealing with the problem of students who provide false answers to KIP survey questions has been a subject of concern for years (since the KIP survey program began) and has involved the collaborative efforts of substance abuse prevention authorities in the federal government and in many states that use surveys similar to KIP.
While some students do mark answers indiscriminately, or intentionally exaggerate their drug use to “impress their friends”, we exclude from consideration the answers from students who do so.
Since students can leave any or all questions blank, or decline to participate in the survey, only a couple of percent of students give us replies that we find it necessary to exclude.
In summary, the following factors contribute to the accuracy of the self-report data in KIP:
- Significant efforts go into protecting the anonymity of responses (students know that a response cannot be traced back to them).
- The anonymity of the responses greatly reduces the risk associated with telling the truth.
- In most reports, REACH uses the 30-day measures (as opposed to one year or lifetime), as this measure is less likely to be flawed by faulty recall.
- In the data cleaning process, REACH searches for implausible responses and discrepancies, and eliminates those surveys from the tallied results
- Stringent administration guidelines ensure that data are collected in the same manner across school districts, increasing the reliability of the data
- Although it is not perfect, self-report data has more strengths than other data gathering options.
- In an interviewer-administered survey, youth may be more tempted to tell the interviewer what the youth thinks the interviewer wants to hear (or what is acceptable behavior in their community). Since KIP deals with behaviors that are against state laws and school rules, youth may be unwilling to speak candidly/truthfully to an adult in a face-to-face or telephone interview.
- Observation is another method of gathering data. However, the costs associated with following youth during all the hours in which they could be engaged in these behaviors is prohibitively costly and unrealistic. Also, an observer’s presence could dramatically alter the youth’s behavior.
- Drug testing. This method of data gathering carries with it certain costs and liabilities; and, depending upon the precise test, it may not address the myriad of substances that a youth may use.
6. Is the KIP Survey administered every year?
No. The KIP survey used to be administered annually, but since 2004, survey administration has taken place every other year, in even-numbered years only. The next administration of the survey will be in October 2018.
7. Are parents allowed to view the KIP survey?
Yes. Copies of the survey should be available for viewing at the school office or some other appropriate location. However, in order to protect the confidentiality of the document, the survey may not be removed from the building.
8. How long will the KIP survey take to administer?
REACH recommends allowing a full 50-minute time period for survey administration. The survey itself takes about 25 minutes for the average student to complete, but there are always some students who will take longer.
9. When should I schedule a KIP survey make-up date for our district?
KIP guidelines recommend waiting at least one week after the initial survey date to administer the make-up survey, so that the data will be more complete and more accurate.
10. What about students who are not participating in the KIP survey?
Students not participating in the survey could, for example, remain at their desks or go to the library to read a book or do homework. The activity should not be construed as either a punishment for non-participation, or as a more desirable alternative to taking the survey.
11. Is the online version of the KIP Survey compatible for use with tablets?
Yes! The KIP Survey can successfully be administered on desktop computers, laptops, tablets, even smartphones.
12. Should the paper surveys be passed out in the envelopes?
No. Envelopes and instruction sheets should be passed out first. Then, after each student has received an envelope and instruction sheet, and has a pen or pencil, the surveys may be passed out. During the survey, students should be encouraged to use the envelope to cover their responses. After finishing, each student should place his/her survey in his/her envelope and seal it. (Just discard the instruction sheets.)
13. How do I train survey administrators?
Administrators should familiarize themselves with the survey process by carefully reading the training manual. You may then want to make an outline based on the training manual, reiterate the most important points, and ask for questions about each subject. Going over the dates and times for survey administration would also be a good idea. Additional copies of the KIP Student Survey Training Manual may be printed from the link provided on this website.
14. Is the “Agreement of Confidentiality and Professional Ethics” (found in your KIP Survey Training Manual), intended to be sent to REACH, or kept on file at our district?
The Agreement of Confidentiality and Professional Ethics should be kept on file at your district for one year.
15. What do I do with my district’s completed surveys?
The sealed envelopes containing the KIP survey forms should be packaged and prepared for pick-up as soon as possible (within one week) after each school has completed its survey.
Once every school in your district has completed its survey administration (including make-up surveys), immediately bundle each group of surveys, being sure to clearly label each bundle by school. Also, separately bundle and mark any Spanish language surveys. Mark the name of the School District on the outside of each box, and label each box ‘KIP Surveys.’ Enclose a copy of ALL Classroom Administration Report Forms for each school and grade in the shipping container.
Complete the ‘KIP Survey Return Form’ online at: http://reach.kipsurvey-returnform.sgizmo.com/s3/ or FAX a copy to Lisa Crabtree at 502.589.1582, and enclose a copy in the shipping container. Upon receipt of your KIP Survey Return Form, you will receive an email from REACH with instructions and a link for your pre-paid UPS shipping labels