UNK political science, Buffalo Co. Community Partners conducting behavioral survey

Buffalo County Community Partners Logo

KEARNEY – The University of Nebraska at Kearney Department of Political Science is working with Buffalo County Community Partners to improve the health of area residents.

The Kearney-based nonprofit hired the UNK department to conduct its 2018 adult behavioral risk factor survey.

Buffalo County Community Partners and its partner agencies use results from the survey to create a clear picture of the changes in physical and behavioral health in the county, measure the success of coalitions, identify emerging issues and apply for grant funding.

The UNK Department of Political Science was hired to help create the survey, collect responses and analyze the data. Questions are based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s behavioral risk factor surveillance system.

“We are very excited to be partnering with our local university system to administer our adult survey this year,” said Emily Baughman, data coordinator for Buffalo County Community Partners. “Bringing the survey into an online format should help us get a more representative sample of our community.”

This is the first year UNK has been involved with the implementation of the survey, which was previously administered over the phone by the Bureau of Sociological Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

UNK’s proposal changes the survey to an online format with student researchers conducting some of the work.

Students translated the information to Spanish to reach a larger portion of the Latino population, helped build the online survey and went into the community to solicit responses from underrepresented groups. They’re also expected to assist with data analyzation and a final report and presentation to Buffalo County Community Partners once the survey is complete.

“BCCP saw this as a way to strengthen its relationship with the university and build capacity in our community,” said Diane Duffin, an associate professor and chair of the UNK Department of Political Science. “Our department saw it as a way to engage students in applied research and better understand the public health issues facing Buffalo County.”

The survey, conducted every two to three years, is available to Buffalo County residents ages 19 and older. It can be found online at bcchp.org/survey and takes about 10 minutes to complete.

A similar survey on physical health status will be administered next year.

Take the survey


Writer: Tyler Ellyson, writing specialist, UNK News, 308.865.8529, ellysontd@unk.edu
Source: Denise Zwiener, Buffalo County Community Partners executive director, 308.865.2280, dzwiener@bcchp.org
Source: Diane Duffin, UNK Department of Political Science chair, 308.865.8758, duffind@unk.edu

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