Information Services Division


Service Level Agreement (Opinio)

Section 1 - Document Control

Document Name: csd000292.htm

Revision History:

Nov 20111.1Digital EducationFinal Version

Section 2 - Introduction

This document describes the service that users can expect when using the Opinio service supported by Information Systems at UCL. The document is a written aid to support a clear outline of the service described.

Section 3 - Purpose of Service

This service provides UCL staff and UCL Postgraduate students with a web-based tool which can be used to design and deliver online surveys.

Section 4 - Eligibility for Service

The service is available to UCL staff and UCL Postgraduate students who wish to deliver online surveys to support teaching and learning or for research purposes.

To apply for an Opinio account, users must complete the online application form at: UCL/Learning Technology/Opinio/Request Account.

Access to postgraduate students is granted at the discretion of Information Systems. For postgraduates, a formal request for access should be made by the Departmental Computing Rep. or Project supervisor to contact the Digital Education Team stating the reason for the request.

Section 5 - Data Protection and Retention

All research projects using personal data must be registered with Legal Services before the data is collected. This includes projects approved by the Joint Research Office. Form 2 should be used to register most projects. For those approved by the Joint Research Office Form 9 should be used. Both forms can be downloaded from UCL Legal-Services/Data-Protection-Overview. They should be completed electronically and sent to Data-Protection with copies of any information sheets and consent forms that you are using.

Projects using truly anonymised or aggregated information does not have to be registered with Legal Services and you do not have to worry about compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Please note that data should be removed from the Opinio service and transferred to the Department conducting the survey once the survey has been completed. It is the department’s responsibility to insure that data transferred will be retained in compliance with the UCL Records Retention Schedule and data protection regulations. 

Survey data should not be kept on the Opinio system longer than 6 months unless there are specific requirements such as longitudinal studies which should be discussed with Digital Education. ISD Digital Education will periodically run data cleaning activities to maintain compliance with data protection regulations, please ensure that your data is removed from Opinio in line with the service policy and with UCL’s data governance policies.

  • The UCL Research Data Policy gives general recommendation about length of time for data storage that researchers must observe. It states that research data should be “retained for a minimum of ten years after publication or public release” (p.3).
  • The UCL Retention Schedule prescribes how long each type of records or data should be held. Section 2 (p.4) applies to Research Data in particular. This Schedule deals with ALL types of data and records, whether electronic or not. For instance, your data may include clinical trials, emails, artefacts, video files, lab books or photographs. You will find the answer in this Schedule.

Your funders may have their own policy regarding the preservation of data that were collected as part of a project that they funded. Check our list of links to funders’ policies. Your funders’ policies generally take precedence over UCL’s policies.

For support and advice about storage & long-term preservation please see the library dedicated how-to guide.

Please note should you require a survey tool that provides protection for highly confidential information, please use REDCap in the Data Safe Haven and not the Opinio service.

Section 6 - Detailed Service Description

The service comprises the Opinio software available at UCL Opinio, running on a server maintained and supported by Information Systems. Opinio is a survey tool which runs through a web browser. It provides a framework for authoring and distributing surveys as well as a range of reporting facilities. For authoring, Opinio provides a number of question types including multiple choice, rating, drop-down lists, numeric, matrix, essay and open-ended. Surveys can be delivered either by open-access or by invitation to a specified list. Polls can be used to embed single question surveys into a webpage.

Users will be allocated an account upon receipt of the online application form at: UCL/Learning Technology/Opinio/Request Account.

Section 7 - Service Availability and Quality Expectations

The service is generally available for 24 hours a day 7 days a week. ‘At Risk’ periods are announced in advance in order to enable IS systems and network upgrades, and may limit service provision on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, between 08.00 and 09.00. Occasionally weekend service shutdowns are arranged which affect all UCL services; these weekend shutdowns are agreed with senior College management and advance notice is given. Every effort is made to minimise the number of weekend shutdowns. Operator cover is from 8am to 7pm - Monday to Friday. All IS systems, including equipment enabling network access for student owned systems in HoR, run unattended overnight and at weekends. If they fail, service may not be restored until the next working day.

Section 8 - Technical Support

The Opinio service is supported by Information Systems. The Opinio server is backed up to tape every evening for disaster recovery purposes.

Section 9 - User Support

New Accounts: Requests for new accounts should be submitted using the online form at: UCL/Learning Technology/Opinio/Request Account.

We aim to reply to and/or refer requests within 2 working days of their arrival. Any messages received overnight, at weekends, during training sessions, public holidays and College closures will be dealt with as soon as possible.

Training : Currently there are no formal training courses offered, comprehensive help documentation is available from within the application itself. The Digital Education team offer telephone support and advice on the technical aspects of using Opinio.

Announcements: Whenever significant system bugs which may affect the service to users are identified or an upgrade to the service is being made an announcement will be made to: Survey-Users.

Section 10 - Exclusions, Exceptions and Limitations

The Digital Education team cannot design or create surveys for individuals, nor can they provide specialist advice on survey design and analysis. Support is limited to technical support with the Opinio interface.

Section 11 - Service Change Requests

Information Systems are always improving services and all our services undergo constant development. Users are invited to send comments and requests to the ISD IT Services. These communications will be brought to the attention of IS Group Managers to consider changes and implement where appropriate, subject to priority and available resource.

Section 12 - Related Service Elements

Related services that support this service, are supported by it or are complementary to it include IS Network Connectivity Services, IS Infrastructure Services, IS Filestore, IS Managed PC Service, IS Information and Support Services.

All central communications and computing systems are normally left running but unattended overnight, at weekends, during Public Holidays and College closures. IS support services, including Digital Education, are closed during these periods.

Section 13 - Charging

There are no charges to for the use of Opinio. Support and training provided by Digital Education is also provided free of charge.

Section 14 - Service Conditions

All use of Communications and Information Technology (C&IT) is governed by the UCL Computing Regulations which is available on the www at: UCL-Info/Policy/Computing/Use/.

Section 15 - Contact Details

The first point of contact for all queries relating to this service is the Digital Education Team. See section 8 User Support.