Research Areas: Social Services

 

 

  • CA Department of Insurance (CDI) (2014)
    • The Institute for Social Research (ISR) contracted with the California Department of Insurance (CDI) to conduct research as to why more Californians do not take advantage of the state’s Low Cost Auto Insurance Program (CLCA). Currently, only 11,000 people within California utilize this program, despite the fact that there are more than four million uninsured cars within the state. The ISR’s primary objectives for this project were to analyze and make recommendations for the existing data collection and management used by the CDI, better understand the motives and rationale behind those that do, or do not purchase CLCA, and ultimately make recommendations to improve data management processes, while increasing program utilization rates. The ISR implemented a mixed-method approach to this project, using interviews, surveys (telephone, web based, and smart phone), and primary and secondary data analysis to provide the client with a better understanding of how to maximize program efficiency and use. (Report)
  • CA Department of Rehabilitation/ State Independent Living Centers - (SILC) (2013)
    • The Institute for Social Research (ISR) has contracted with the CA Department of Rehabilitation (DOR)/State Independent Living Centers (SILC) to perform ongoing needs assessment analyses for the 28 Statewide Independent Living Centers. We will be investigating where possible gaps are in relation to the types of services being provided for individuals with disabilities and identifying key areas in need of improvement as a means of strengthening California’s independent living network. (Report)
  • Community Care Licensing (CCL) Key Indicators Study (2011-2014)
    • The ISR has contracted with the California Department of Social Services (CDSS), Community Care Licensing (CCL) Division to provide guidance, design, development, analyses, and implementation of new inspection compliance protocol(s) evaluation tools. These tools will be used by CCL in the inspection process for residential care facilities. The ISR will design and develop the Key Indicator Inspection Model (KIM) to complement the current inspection process, which ensures compliance with state regulations. The ISR will also provide formal recommendations and technical assistance for these evaluation tools. For those interested, please click here to access audio files from a Stakeholder Meeting held October 28, 2011 at Sacramento State University.
  • Community Care Licensing (CCL) Caregiver Background Check Bureau (CBCB) Workload Study
    • The California Department of Social Services (CDSS), Community Care Licensing Division (CCLD) has contracted with the Institute for Social Research (ISR) to conduct a workload study on activities performed by Caregiver Background Check Bureau (CBCB) unit staff. The ISR will work collaboratively with the CCLD and the CBCB to determine workload standards for CBCB analysts who carry out criminal history background checks to ensure that residential and day care facilities serving Californians meet legal requirements established to insure their safety.
  • Community Care Licensing (CCL) Licensing Program Analyst (LPA) Workload Study
    • The California Department of Social Services (CDSS), Community Care Licensing Division (CCLD) has contracted with the Institute for Social Research (ISR) to conduct a workload study on activities performed by Licensing Program Analysts (LPAs). The ISR will work collaboratively with the CCL division in the data collection, analysis and interpretation phases of the project to determine the amount of time required by LPA's to conduct the inspection process for a variety of residential and day care facilities that provide services to children and adults throughout California. The evaluation will update a previous study conducted by the ISR in 2001 which was used by the CCL to determine workload standards and staffing requirements for its workforce. The current study will take into account the new inspection processes developed by CCL, additional regulatory requirements and the substantial growth in the number of facilities that have occured in the past decade.
  • First 5 California Annual Report (2012)
    • The California Children and Families Commission (First 5 California) was created as a result of the California Children and Families Act of 1998 (Proposition 10). First 5 California is the lead agency and statewide coordinator charged with facilitating and enacting the goals of this Act pertaining to the development of California’s early childhood population. In order to promote, support, and improve the development process of children within the first five years of life, the Commission has been given the task of establishing, instituting, and coordinating the appropriate standards, resources, and programs to accomplish this mission. First 5 California has contracted with the ISR to conduct its annual evaluation of programs and a fiscal report for presentation to the Governor and the State Legislature. (2011-2012 Annual Report) (Website)
  • Sacramento County Adult Drug Court Co-Occurring Disorders Enhancement Project (2012)
    • The study will profile and evaluate the effectiveness of the Co-occurring Disorders (COD) Enhanced Treatment program designed to augment the existing Adult Drug Court program in Sacramento County. Analysis will examine the efficacy of program procedures which assess the need for treatment of substance use disorder (SUD) alone or the need for COD treatment which involves concurrent treatment of mental health and substance abuse disorders. The COD treatment program will be evaluated based on intra-program outcome measures including participation and services received in available treatment programs, changes in scores on the Addiction Severity Index and Global Assessment of Functioning, and evaluation of external outcome measures including retention in the program and program completion. While both programs are still available, placement is based on individual need, and an additional component of the analysis will include a comparison between those who receive substance treatment alone and clients who receive the enhanced COD treatment program. The study is funded by a Bureau of Justice Administration grant and is being conducted in partnership with the Sacramento County Probation Department and The Effort, which has been the addictions treatment provider at the Drug court for 12 years.
  • In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Longitudinal Cost Analysis (2012)
    • This project is being conducted for the California Department of Social Services to describe changes in the IHSS population over a ten-year period, 2000-2010, examining the projected cost of providing state-supported long-term care services for this population in the presence or absence of the IHSS program.
  • In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Program Analysis (2012)
    • This project is being conducted for the California Department of Social Services to examine three existing managed care models that integrate home health and home-based community services to highlight potential implications for California’s IHSS program.
  • Department of Motor Vehicles Customer Focus Groups (2012)
    • The ISR contracted with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to conduct a series of focus groups to learn more about customer experiences with DMV products and services. Focus group topics included test marketing publications, forms and new procedures and policies, website usability and new online services, and feedback on specific customer service issues. Ultimately, the information and feedback gained will help the DMV achieve operational and program efficiencies and increase customer satisfaction.
  • In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) - Quality Assurance and Hourly Task Guidelines Project (2010)
    • This project was conducted for the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) to help improve its program supporting in-home services, which allows the elderly and disabled needing living assistance remain in their own homes. The ISR’s role in the IHSS Quality Assurance project involved several elements. One component was to conduct an assessment of training for social workers and its subsequent impact on the work of the participants. A second component was to help CDSS and its Time per Task initiative by collecting and analyzing information from focus groups with those receiving services (consumers) and social workers. A third component was to collect information on the implementation of Time per Task guidelines implemented in the fall of 2006 to help standardize the hours allocated for various services that are provided to the elderly and disabled. In this portion of the project, the ISR analyzed data on the number of hours provided to consumers, guideline exceptions, and appeals by consumers regarding the number of hours they were allocated. (Website)
  • Evaluation of the Fast Track Math for Women Program (FTMW) at Sacramento State (CSUS) (2010)
    • As part of the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Research on Gender in Science and Engineering, California State University, Sacramento (CSUS) was awarded a project to create the Fast Track Math for Women (FTMW) program at CSUS. FTMW was designed as a train-the-trainer program, with the purpose of creating a core of math educators who possess the knowledge needed to implement the FTM intervention program along with the tools and awareness needed to promote gender equity in the STEM fields. The FTMW launched its pilot program during the summer of 2010. The ISR conducted a formative evaluation of the FTMW training, which included an observational evaluation of the effectiveness of the practicum and both formal and informal feedback.
  • Survey of Charitable Giving in the Greater Sacramento Region (2010)
    • The ISR was contracted by the Center for Strategic Economic Research (CSER) to conduct a computer-assisted telephone survey of households in the Sacramento region regarding charitable giving behaviors, motivating factors, and impediments to giving. ISR prepared a report summarizing the survey findings and comparing charitable giving in the Sacramento Region with findings from published reports on charitable giving in other geographic areas. This information is being used to assist a steering committee of local non-profit leaders to create an education and outreach campaign highlighting the importance of charitable giving and encouraging philanthropic gifts from households in the greater Sacramento region. The ISR's contribution can be viewed in the Greater Sacramento Generosity Project Quantitative Research Compilation report prepared by CSER. (Report)
  • Employment Development Department (EDD) Branding Survey (2010)
    • This project was conducted for the Economic Development Department (EDD) to determine if the general public knows who to contact when they become unemployed or are in need of various employment and training services provided by the EDD One Stop Centers. These centers currently have different naming conventions and the EDD wishes to measure how familiar California residents are with the names of the centers within their locale, in their region, and outside their region. This project was a consortium with the Public Research Institute (PRI) at San Francisco State University, the Social Research Laboratory (SRL) at Fresno State and the Institute for Social Research (ISR) at Sacramento State.
  • Survey of Parents of Children Receiving Child Welfare Assistance (2010)
    • The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) has developed a comprehensive Program Improvement Plan (PIP) in partnership with Federal, State, and County governments, and public and private agencies regarding children receiving child welfare. Many of the program improvement goals can be measured using data from the automated Child Welfare Services/Case Management System (CWS/CMS). However, to measure progress toward PIP goals for which CDSS does not have data, surveys are conducted of the parents and foster parents of children receiving child welfare services. The annual survey, using methods that provide statistically significant statewide quantifiable information, is used to measure program changes.
  • First 5 California Special Needs Project (2008)
    • ISR conducted two surveys to evaluate how well First 5 California’s School Readiness (SR) program and Special Needs Project (SNP) were meeting the needs of children under the age of five years old. One survey was conducted electronically with SR programs at schools throughout the state to collect information about their preschool programs and the types of accommodations they provide for special needs children at their site. The second survey was a computer-assisted telephone survey of families served at one of the 10 SNP demonstration sites, which are facilities which provide access to early childhood developmental screening. This family survey focused on collecting information about the parent’s overall impression of the screening program and how well the program staff met the needs of both parents and children. (Report)
  • Sacramento County Food Stamps Eligible Population Estimate (2007)
    • Sacramento County is in the process of developing performance measures for it programs in Department of Human Assistance. One of the indicators of success is the percentage of County residents who are eligible to receive food stamps that are actually receiving them (a measure of hunger prevention). There are two key factors that go into this computation - income and immigrant status. The first is that Food Stamps is an income-eligible program; people below poverty level are eligible. The determination of eligible residents using this criterion is not too difficult. The second issue, being a citizen or a legal immigrant is more difficult (undocumented immigrants are not eligible for food stamps). The Institute for Social Research engaged in a project with the County to develop a model for estimating how many otherwise eligible individuals were excluded from participating in the food stamp program due to being illegal immigrants.
  • In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Enhancement Initiative (2003-2006)
    • The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) was awarded a Real Choice Systems Change grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. CDSS contracted with the ISR to carry out the majority of the grant’s activities. Called the IHSS Enhancement Initiative, the grant's goal is to develop educational materials for IHSS consumers and providers that will be shared with the state's counties and public authorities. Project activities included: (1) Performance of an assessment of the need for training among IHSS consumers and providers; (2) Inventory of existing training materials for consumers and providers; and (3) Development of new educational materials and revision of existing materials to serve the needs of both IHSS consumers and providers. (Consumer Materials | Provider Materials)
  • Evaluation of the Licensing of Engineers in California (2003)
    • The ISR completed a legislatively mandated evaluation, determining whether there was a justification for California's distinction between the "practice act" disciplines of civil, electrical and mechanical engineering and the remaining "title act" disciplines. The study resulted in a set of recommendations for restructuring the licensing of engineers in the state. (Report)
  • Licensing Program Analysts Workload Study (2001)
    • California Department of Social Services, Division of Community Care Licensing funded a study of the state's 450 Licensing Program Analysts pursuant to a revision of the budgeting standard that funds this expanding program. (Report)
  • Evaluation of Managed Care in Tulare County (1995)
    • On November 1, 1992, the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) approved a demonstration project to test whether all eligible IHSS clients in a county could be fully and competently served at Fiscal Year 1992/93 program allocation levels by a private contractor. The Managed Care Demonstration Project was initiated in Tulare County and CDSS contracted with the ISR to evaluate the outcome of this experiment in managed care in terms of coverage, cost and quality of care. The ISR conducted a comparison between Tulare County and eight other counties over a four year period. (Report)
  • How Californians See Cooperatives (1995)
    • In cooperation with the University of California, Davis Center for Cooperatives, the ISR conducted a statewide telephone survey. The goal of this survey was to to examine awareness, knowledge, and perceptions of cooperatives and to obtain reliable estimates of co-op membership. (Report)
  • Administrative Adjudication Division Study (1994)
    • In cooperation with The Results Group, ISR evaluated the California Department of Social Services Administrative Adjudications Division's State Hearing process from 1992 to 1994, assisting in the design of a streamlined process to handle the increasing number of hearing requests in the state's social programs. Follow-up work for AAD involved a time study of the Administrative Law Judges' hearing and decision-writing activities in order to distribute fair hearing costs between two state agencies: the Departments of Health and Social Services.
  • Surveys of Visitors to Sacramento (1991-1992 & 1996-1997)
    • Funded by the Sacramento Convention and Visitor's Bureau, the ISR conducted two separate year long surveys of visitors to the Sacramento region. The survey sought to provide a broad discription of Sacramento visitors, including information on their origin, reasons for visiting, and the kinds of attractions and locations visited.