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Conducting Surveys

Specific wording must be used at the beginning of your survey to meet privacy requirements. Use the template language and platforms below to help make your survey compliant.

Privacy-compliant survey language

This language can be used for both research and non-research surveys such as those used in QI initiatives. It can be used to ensure privacy compliance in any survey study in which the survey is the only data collection tool. However, all surveys used for research must be submitted to a Research Ethics Board (REB) for review and approval and must use REB approved language.

Review criteria for non-research surveys  

Stand-alone non-research surveys that are exempted from REB review (e.g., surveys for QI or program evaluation purposes) must be reviewed by PHSA’s Information Access & Privacy Office ( OR the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) privacy officer ( (for BCCDC employees only) if any of the following criteria (PDF) are met. This does not apply to REB-approved surveys.

PHSA-recommended platforms

Available for all PHSA researchers:

  • REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture) managed by BC Children's Hospital Research Institute Data Management Team is a web-based, metadata-driven EDC software solution and workflow methodology for designing and capturing data for research studies. REDCap allows users to build and manage online surveys and research databases quickly and securely.   
  • Zoom can be used to collect information from participants in a number of ways including:  (1) sending registration forms before meetings or webinars to collect attendee information; (2) polling; and (3) sending survey links after Zoom meetings or webinars.
  •  Checkbox is a survey tool that sits on IMITS-controlled servers. It is available to all PHSA researchers and offers PHSA and program branding. To learn more, visit the IMITS Checkbox Surveys page.

Available to PHSA researchers affiliated with UBC:

  • If you are part of the UBC Community (UBC faculty, staff, or student members), you are eligible to use this tool. To learn more, visit UBC's Survey Tool page.
Available to BC Cancer researchers: 

  • BC Cancer researchers can learn more about the BC Cancer REDCap service by contacting
Available to GSC researchers:
  • GSC researchers can learn more about the GSC REDCap service by contacting Diane Miller, Project Manager at GSC (
Standard survey language

The Standard Survey Language    (Word doc) template applies only to survey studies wherein the survey is the only data collection tool. When using this template it is expected that you will use it verbatim unless you have contacted PHSA's research privacy office ( If justified, she will help you to adjust the wording to meet the needs of your participants.       

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