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Welcome to SurveyCTO!

SurveyCTO is the most reliable, secure, and scalable mobile data collection platform for researchers and professionals working in offline settings.

In this overview section, please find a series of topics that will help orient you to the SurveyCTO platform. We also have a wide range of resources in our Support Center, to help you securely collect high-quality data.

The best way to master SurveyCTO is to start using it! If you do not have a subscription, sign up today for a free 15-day trial.

SurveyCTO components

SurveyCTO is a product that helps you to collect high-quality data using mobile devices, or using the web. Often, this data is collected during personal interviews – either in-person (Computer Assisted Personal Interviews, or CAPI) or on the phone (Computer Assisted Telephone Interviews, or CATI). But you might also be performing some kind of facility inspection, recording data from focus group discussions, or just conducting a web survey. Data collection can take a great many forms, and SurveyCTO was built to be flexible, scalable, and powerful enough to handle the most complex needs.

SurveyCTO consists of three primary software components:

  1. The SurveyCTO server, which serves blank forms to both mobile and web users and receives filled-out form submissions in return. It also provides a management console with online help, sample forms, and tools to assist you in: designing, testing, and managing your forms; managing users and access; monitoring data as it comes in; reviewing, correcting, and approving that data; and exporting or publishing it to outside systems. The server console includes the Data Explorer, which is a built-in data monitoring and visualization tool that enables users to review and visualize their data—even encrypted data—at both the aggregate and individual submission levels in real-time.
  2. SurveyCTO Collect, which is a mobile app that data collectors can use to fill out forms on their phones or tablets. After data has been collected, it is uploaded to the SurveyCTO server when an Internet connection is available or transferred to a supervisor's laptop over a local (offline) WiFi connection.
  3. SurveyCTO Desktop, which is the best way to access and use SurveyCTO on a desktop or laptop computer. It provides powerful tools for: synchronizing and exporting your data in a variety of formats; working offline, including support for cold-room computers, local WiFi data syncs, and offline documentation; convenient access to the server console, Support Center, and other online resources; and more.

Continue exploring the documentation available here for more information. Learn best by doing? You can see all of these components in action by jumping right in with our quick-start guide.

SurveyCTO was originally based on the Open Data Kit (ODK) open source platform. We added thousands of improvements, hosting, documentation, and support, in order to provide a more powerful, flexible, and usable platform.

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