July 13, 2021
Reporting Contacts Q&A
Extension professionals utilize a variety of strategies to deliver educational programming including face-to-face meetings, virtual presentations, one-on-one consultations, and social media. All are effective strategies but require us to report our efforts differently.
As part of the annual reporting requirements, NIFA requires extension professionals to report direct educational contacts. The definition of a direct educational contact is when both the extension professional and the client/receiver are linked together at the same time and/or place for educational purposes. Examples include:
- individual consultations in the field or office
- face-to-face interactions in group meetings, workshops, virtual meetings, field days, classrooms, etc.
- Individual correspondence by letter, email, or telephone
Q. How do I count contacts in a virtual setting?
When presenting a program in a virtual setting such as Zoom, all the participants would be considered direct education contacts because of the linking together of the extension professional and the client/receiver. Information about race, ethnicity and gender can be collected in a variety of ways: through registration before the event, electronically during the program by completing an anonymous poll or after the meeting as part of the evaluation survey.
If you upload a video of your webinar to YouTube or Facebook, the number of views for the recording would be posted as an indirect contact.
Q. How do I count contacts in a workshop series?
New guidance from NIFA indicates that a workshop series (such as Master Gardener Volunteer basic training) is considered a distinct activity and should only be counted once regardless of the number of sessions. If those same individuals participate in a different MG session outside of the basic training, it would be considered as another distinct event.
For more information, check out the “KSRE Client Contact Reporting Guidelines."