Frequently Asked Questions
What is the StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey?
StandPoint Faculty Engagement is a collaboration between the AAMC and medical schools that work to ensure that academic medical centers are great places to work. StandPoint offers tools and resources to help medical schools improve faculty engagement, retention, and ultimately enhance institutional culture. The StandPoint initiative is evidence-based and designed to aid academic medical centers in developing talent management practices that is more likely to attract and retain excellent faculty.
StandPoint provides participating institutions with tailored diagnostic and benchmarking information through a comprehensive survey. Through this program, your institution will be able to determine the changes you would like to see in your faculty and develop a plan to put those changes into action using StandPoint’s carefully structured tools, templates, and project guidelines.
Your institution will progress through the StandPoint initiative on a shared timeline in order to provide opportunities for facilitated discussion, shared learning, and scholarship.
Why should I fill out the AAMC StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey?
Simply stated, your medical school needs to know what you think of your work experience. Administrators at your institution hope to identify the areas that can be improved. And because the survey directly addresses issues that can impact policies and strategic planning in your institution, this is an important opportunity to let your opinions be known. Your answers will help identify areas that are particularly important to your campus in the context of nationwide results. Ultimately, your answers will not only help improve your medical school, but the academic medical community overall.
Are you surveying my institution only?
To date nearly 50 U.S. medical schools have participated in StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey.
How did you get my name and contact information?
When your medical school joined the StandPoint initiative, they provided the AAMC a data file with the names and e-mail addresses of full-time and part-time faculty members. This information will only be used for the purposes of administering the survey.
I get surveyed all the time. How is this survey different?
The AAMC StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey provides participating institutions with a management tool that can be used as a powerful lever to understand and improve the quality of work life for faculty, as each section of the instrument is designed to generate a report of not simply “interesting”, but actionable data. The survey was developed and reviewed by experts in survey design, statistics, economics, psychology, and education, and based upon in-depth focus groups with medical school clinical and basic science faculty members. The survey is one important component of the larger StandPoint initiative focused on improving faculty engagement, in which your institution is participating.
Why don’t you ask someone else?
The StandPoint Faculty Engagement survey takes a census approach to surveying—that is, we survey all full-time and part-time faculty members, not just a sample. Therefore, it is important that all medical school faculty members invited to participate go on to the complete the survey. To have confidence in the results, your institution is counting on as many faculty members as possible to participate. Each response can make a difference in the survey results.
Is there a paper version of the survey available for submission?
The AAMC StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey is administered electronically; all respondents must complete the survey online. If for some reason, you are unable to complete the survey online, please contact the survey’s Help Desk staff identified in the initial invite.
How long will the survey take?
The survey typically takes 20 minutes to complete, however this varies according to each respondent.
How long will I have access to the survey?
It is best for you to start the survey as soon as you receive it; however, you will have access to the survey for approximately one month.
A series of e-mail reminders, as well as a final notification of the survey closing, will be sent to faculty who have not yet finished the survey. It is best to allot time to complete the full survey at one sitting, but it is possible to save your results at any point during the survey and finish it later.
If I have to stop while completing my survey, do I have to start all over again?
You do not need to start the survey all over again. By clicking the “Next” button on the bottom of each page, you automatically save your answers up to that point in the survey. To access the survey again, you simply need to open the same unique link that was e-mailed to you and it will take you back to the last question where you left off.
I am having trouble opening the survey link. What should I do?
The problem may be caused by your browser’s pop-up blocker. Although our survey is designed not to be hindered by the default settings of such pop-up blockers, the more stringent blockers may have caused a problem like the one you are describing.
To temporarily disable your pop-up blocker, hold down the CTRL button as you click the link that begins the survey. If you are still having problems, disable your pop-up blocker in your browser’s “Tools” menu, under “Pop-up Blocker” (if using internet Explorer), or under “Options” (if using Firefox). If you are using a third-party pop-up blocker, such as Google Toolbar, you will have to temporarily disable that too.
If trouble persists, contact our Help Desk at 202-862-6231 Monday-Friday, 9:00am – 5:00 pm EST.
I am worried about the confidentiality of my answers. Will my institution be able to trace my responses back to me?
Confidentiality is assured in all StandPoint analyses and reports. Your name and e-mail address are retained solely for the sake of reminding respondents to begin or to complete their survey. When we submit the survey report to your institution, only the aggregate data will be included in the report. No identifiers are matched to reported responses, and no disaggregated data will be presented for any subgroup with fewer than five respondents. In addition, any personally identifiable information will be removed from all responses to open-ended questions.
What will you do with the data?
The responses to this survey will be combined with those of other colleagues at your medical school, analyzed, and summarized in the aggregate. StandPoint will provide your institution with a survey report that compiles all of the quantitative findings from your medical school. The report will also compare survey results from your institution with several other peer medical schools participating in the StandPoint initiative. Each report contains question-by-question summaries that highlight major findings relative to peer medical schools and the entire cohort. Statistically significant differences along a number of demographic variables (e.g., rank, gender) are also highlighted.
Additionally, your institution will receive an electronic file with the survey’s qualitative data in a de-identified and redacted format to protect the identities of the respondents. Each report will also be accompanied by a detailed methodology guide summarizing the survey’s design process, the statistical analyses performed, and an explicit, easy-to-read guide to interpreting your institution’s data reports.
What will my institution do with the data?
Medical schools use the information from the StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey in different ways. Most will share the results in summary form with faculty members, academic administrators, hospital administrators, and other groups who need to understand levels of faculty engagement. Some institutions will analyze information from the survey report and use it in their long range institutional planning. Your medical school may also share the results with others to help recruit new faculty members. Perhaps the most important use is for your institution to understand where it can focus attention and resources to make improvements for you and your colleagues.
Will I be apprised of the results of the survey, and if so, when and how?
The results will be compiled in a report for your institution. The StandPoint report will be directed to your medical school’s leadership. Your administration/ Task Force will share the information with your medical school faculty.
Are research data stored securely? What data will be destroyed at the end of the study?
The AAMC will store data on secure servers and will destroy all identified data within two years of survey administration. Data security is of great importance, as is ensuring confidentiality and the safety of all participants. On behalf of the AAMC, StandPoint takes great effort to protect human subjects in all research programs. Surveys, such as the StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey, require (through laws governing human subjects’ research) that AAMC disclose collection procedures, data storage plans, and analysis and reporting expectations to participants prior to participation. Creating confidence in the integrity of the survey is beneficial both to participants and to each institution. As with all employee surveys, faculty members are more likely to participate and provide candid responses if they know that their identity will be protected.