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Carolina Survey Research Laboratory

The Carolina Survey Research Laboratory (CSRL) is now part of the UNC Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, working collaboratively with its Data Management and Analysis Core (DMAC).

Since its creation in 1990 as the Survey Research Unit, CSRL has provided expertise in data collection, survey design, questionnaire design, population-based estimates, and weighting for the research community at UNC Chapel Hill. Over more than three decades, it has conducted hundreds of collaborative studies at national, state, regional, and local levels, addressing a broad spectrum of issues under grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements.

CSRL will continue to provide the same services historically offered, but now with additional capacity for more data collection and data management options. In joining with DMAC, CSRL’s capacity for survey and question design, data collection, and comprehensive data management and analysis is enhanced, fostering innovative research collaborations and improving the quality and impact of research outcomes.

CSRL Services

To engage any of the services listed below, email: FPGdata@unc.edu


Related to sampling, CSRL offers development of sample design; sample selection from population lists or area frames; sampling aimed at populations as a whole or subpopulations― including those that are rare and/or elusive; effective, proven strategies to recruit selected sample members into the study; and documentation of the sample design in suitable detail for use in journal articles.

Questionnaire Development

Support for questionnaire development includes design of survey instrument to meet the measurement needs of the study; guidance in accommodating the programming and/or formatting requirements of telephone, web, or mail surveys; and field testing to assure quality of the resulting questionnaire.

Data Collection (by Telephone, SMS/Text, Internet, or Mail)

CSRL has experience in a variety of data collection mechanisms, with various platforms, including REDCap, Qualtrics, Blaise, and, for complex projects, custom web-based surveys. We have thoroughly trained and supervised calling staff; state-of-the-art quality control methods; Blaise interviewing software, capable of administering surveys of all sizes, levels of complexity and types; staff with expertise in programming of survey instruments; and staff experienced in conducting large-scale mail surveys.

Survey Data Preparation

For data collected by CSRL or DMAC, or for data collected elsewhere, we can offer data entry of survey responses into an electronic source; thorough cleaning, validation, and editing of data to be used for analysis; complete documentation of all procedures for analysts; and development of codebooks for data labels, formats, and values.

Sample Weighting

Ideally, we would work with projects to develop a plan for sample weights during the proposal development stage to ensure appropriate variables are collected to develop weights to generalize to the population level of interest. Oftentimes, research does not go as planned. We can provide support for development of weights retrospectively based on data collected through the course of the project or with contextual data (e.g., census).

To develop sample weights, we offer state-of-the-art computation methods; adjustments for nonresponse as appropriate (several options depending on the availability of information to estimate response propensities); experience with adjustment for frame coverage in samples; final calibration of the weighted sample to the study population; and complete documentation of all weighting methods in suitable detail for use in journal articles and analytical use of the data.

Statistical Analysis

With our three quantitative methodologists (sociology, education, epidemiology), CSRL can provide statistical analysis for a range of interdisciplinary study designs, including longitudinal studies, time-to-event analyses, case-control studies, cross-sectional data, nested studies (e.g., two-stage designs, substudies), and studies with nested data.

Survey, sampling, and weighting analytic experience include extensive knowledge of survey procedures to properly account for key features of the sample design in data analysis; proficiency in explaining the use of sample weights and design accommodation strategies in analysis of population samples; expertise in developing analysis plans for descriptive reports of findings from surveys; and experience with preparing analysis summary reports.

Proposal Support and Report Writing

Methodologists can provide support for grant writing, study design, reporting for ongoing studies, and manuscript preparation for sample design and selection methods, questionnaire design, and a final version of the survey instrument, including eligibility and IRB requirements, data collection procedures―including interviewer recruitment and training, final response rates, and other outcome measures―and production of final deliverables (e.g., nonresponse and poststratification adjustments).


desktop covered in work papers with graphs, open laptop with hands typing, notepad, and coffee cup


The Data Management and Analysis Core (DMAC) provides high-quality data management and statistical computing services to support interdisciplinary child development research at FPG and the larger University community.

Learn more about DMAC in this web article, Helping bring research to life at FPG and UNC.

CSRL Leadership and Staff

Sabrina Zadrozny; white woman with short dark brown curly hair smiles at camera
CSRL Leadership

Sabrina Zadrozny, PhD, is an epidemiologist and the director of the Data Management Analysis Core at the UNC Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute. She has 15 years of interdisciplinary research experience working in different capacities with vulnerable women, families, and children during the period between contraception and kindergarten. As an interdisciplinary epidemiologist, Zadrozny focuses on longitudinal research methods, causal inference and reproductive, pediatric and perinatal study design. Her experience designing research studies has sparked a passion in translating complex and innovative epidemiologic methods into practice with an eye toward policy change.

Contact her:


CSRL Staff

Deborah Marean, CATI Programmer and Data Manager