Lots of Language

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Data Collection

on August 31, 2014

Today’s blog will be about how I collect data.  It’s a topic thrown around all the time with special service providers, “how do you take data?”  Data is the life blood of our field, so much depends on the accuracy of our data collection and if we don’t take it we don’t have a leg to stand on when it comes to IEP meeting, dismissal or continuation of services, and our evaluations.  So this is how I do it…

The Speechstress on TpT has finally posted her new Caseload Manager: Therapy Log and Data Tracker and it is amazing!  It’s so much better than the previous version, so ignore the post from earlier because this one is very different. Note this does not work on a Mac as Excel for Apple does not support the macros used in the spreadsheet.  

She has a tutorial included in the .zip file so if none of this makes sense check there.

First you’ll come to a sheet named ‘Enter New Student.’  This is where you input all your student information.  If you are using Excel 2010 (as I am) there’s a minor issue when hitting save, but follow the directions from here and here and you’ll be just fine!  Once the information is entered hit save and a “Save successful” message should pop up.  Do the same for all students.





The next sheet is a page with all your student information that you just entered.  There is a drop down menu where you can select the student name that you need.


The next sheet is where you input your data from each session.  This is my favorite part!  Click the button that says Enter new session and a new window opens.  Use the drop down menu to find the correct student, enter the data in the appropriate boxes and hit save and the information appears in the spread sheet.  You can sort the spread sheet by name, date, % correct, whatever makes you life easy.


On the goal accuracy sheet there is a table for overall progress, for a custom date range, or by month.


The caseload sheet shows all the information you entered from the first page in one place.  Here you can sort the students according to any of the columns (name, teacher, grade, etc.)


The absences & service time page shows if you have seen the student for the minimum number of minutes and how many days the student has been absent/unavailable for services.


The last page is where you can find graphs either overall, or by month.



I should mention that there are two additional sheets in the file that are colored black.  These should be ignored at all costs!  They contain the information for the formulas used and could ruin everything if messed with.  So just pretend they’re not there.

Anyway The Speechstress spent a lot of time on this product and it is absolutely amazing!  I highly recommend it and it’s only $4.  It’s great for any data collection and is not specific to one field.  It would be great for monitoring RTI data, tracking growth in academic areas, OT/PT goals, really anything.  

That’s one piece of the puzzle, after the session.  This is how I manage data collection within the session.

Each student has a working file.  I use those sturdy medical files with the two prongs at the top.  I’ve seen some SLPs use ones with a divider to give them more places to store information, but I like just the 2 sides.  One side has the student’s attendance sheet and the other has a data collection sheet that I created and you can find here for free if you would like to use it.  The data boxes are big enough to hold a standard Avery mailing label.  I carry around a sheet of those and take directly on them, then when I’m back in my room I can peel the label off and stick it right on the data sheet.  That way I’m not having to carry a big binder or a million files around the school and I’m not having to transfer data over to multiple places.

2014-08-25 14.51.27

Underneath the data collection page is a page to record indirect/consultation time, and I slip a graph in loose for the student to graph their own progress.  The graph comes from this binder, which is a really neat tool for progress monitoring.  The more I use it the more I’m glad I bought it (as I bought it on a whim…).

2014-08-25 14.51.46 

Then I take the information from here and input it into the spreadsheet from above and voila data collection complete!

Hope that helps you figure out something that will work for you and makes you a more effective therapist.



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