Adherence Monitoring

You can monitor each individual's adherence to the study in order to make sure high-quality data is collected from all participants. You can navigate to the Participation -> Adherence page to have a quick overview of each participant's adherence. Below we describe what kind of information is available in each part of this page.

Per-Participant Report

The following image shows the Adherence page for one of the sample studies.

Ethica Study Participation Adherence List

Each row in this page shows information for a given participant, and includes the following:

  • Participant #: The unique ID of the participant. This ID is used across the system to refer to this participant.
  • Label: Allows you to assign a label to this participant, so you can better recognize them while using the Researcher Dashboard.
  • Last Recorded Data: The time of the last record of data Ethica has received from this participant.
  • Joined In: The start date of the participation period for this participant. If it's in the future, it means the study has not started for this participant yet. The data collection starts on this date and time.
  • Last Day: The date when the participant's participation period finishes and Ethica will stop all data collection.
  • In Operation: Indicates what portion of the time the participant's device was operational and was providing the data requested by your study. This is only available if your study uses data sources other than surveys. You can read more about this entry below.
  • Survey Responses: The number of surveys which the participant has answered, has refused to answer (i.e. canceled), or is expired. You can read more about surveys in the Surveys section.

In Operation

When a participant joins a study using Ethica, the Ethica app will continuously run on their phone during the participation period, collecting the requested data. Ethica app also generates reports on its operation during this time. This operational report, in addition to diagnosis purposes, is also used to measure whether Ethica app was running on participant's device or not. For each given hour, if any report is available, it's an indication that the Ethica app was operating, otherwise, it shows the app was not running.

The In Operation percentage takes the participation period for each participant and calculates for what portion of this period the app was running and for what portion the app was not running, based on the available reports. The time window here starts from the Joined In date as the start of the participation period and ends on the Last Day or today's date, whichever is the earliest.

In Operation column will not be shown if the study only captures survey responses and no other data source. This is because in such cases, the app is not continuously running on participant's phone, and is only running when it has to prompt a survey.

Per-Device Report

Depending on how long a given participant is participating in your study, they may use one or more devices. For example, when they initially join your study, they might have an Android phone, but after some time they might replace their phone and get an iPhone, or they might access their account via the Ethica's web app and provide some data through their desktop computer.

Ethica tags every data collected with the information about the device which the participant used to provide that data. You can access this information for each participant by expanding their associated row in the Adherence page. The image below shows an example:

Per Device Report for Each Participant

The data presented here are from the participation period's start time, to end time or now, whichever is the earliest. For example, the above image was taken on Mar. 20th 2019, so the data is from Mar. 19th 2019 to Mar. 20th 2019.

The first two columns show the ID and the model of the device used by the participant. For example, in the image above participant has used 2 devices during his participation: 1 iPhone and 1 Android (Pixel phone).

The remaining columns will be shown depending on what data sources are included in your study. In the above image, the study only collects GPS data, so the two available columns are In Operation which refers to the general app operation, and GPS. You may have columns for Bluetooth, and Accelerometry data as well.

Each column represents an event plot. The length of the event plot presents the participation timeline, divided by hour, day, or week, depending on the length of the timeline. If the timeline is less than 7 days, it will be divided by hour. If the timeline is less than 7 weeks, it will be divided by days. Any timeline longer than 7 weeks will be divided by weeks. Moving the cursor across the event plot shows the time associated with that spot.

Each given spot on the event plot is either colored or blank. If the spot is colored, it indicates that the data was provided for that time. If the spot is blank, it shows participant did not provide any data during that time.

Interaction with the Per-Device Event Plot

Modifying Participation

The Adherence page further allows you to modify the participation of each participant in your study. You can access these options by opening the three-dot menu at the end of a given participant's row in this page, as shown in the image below:

Participant Modification Menu

Each of the options is described below.

Modify the Participation Period

You can use this option to modify the participation period for a given individual. You can learn more about the details in the Modifying Individual Participation Duration section.

Update Label

All participants in the Researcher Dashboard are referred to by a unique ID. While this helps to protect their privacy, sometimes it makes it hard to quickly recognize which participant belongs to which group. To help with this, you can assign a label to each participant. Ethica will use this label across the Researcher Dashboard to help you better recognize the participants, while at the same time, protecting their privacy.

To set a label for a given participant, choose the Participant Label option in the menu. This will open the Participant Label dialog as shown below:

Participant Label Dialog in Ethica Adherence Page

Note that the label can contain only letters and digits. So labels that contain white spaces, such as MALE 001, will not be accepted.

Updating the Participant's Device

This option allows you to update the study settings on the participant's device. You can learn more about why this might be necessary for this section

Deleting a Participant

The Delete Participant option allows you to delete the current participant from your study. Choosing this option will present the following dialog, asking you to confirm your decision. You can also choose to delete all the data this participant provided for your study:

Delete a Participant from Ethica Study Dialog

Before deleting a participant, keep in mind:

  1. This action is irrevocable. You cannot undo this step.
  2. This option will not delete the participant's account in Ethica. Only their registration in your study will be removed.
  3. The participant may join your study again. In this case, they will be treated as a new participant.