CPSC-Portable Electric Heater Focus Group Sessions

On behalf of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), we are conducting a focus group about perceptions and experience related to the purchase and use of portable electric heaters (e.g. space heater). We would love to talk with people of all backgrounds (race, ethnicity, age, location).

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Who are CPSC and EurekaFacts?

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is an independent federal agency that seeks to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury from consumer products, develop uniform safety standards, and conduct research into product-related illness and injury. EurekaFacts is a market and social sciences research company based in Rockville, MD. CPSC has contracted EurekaFacts to facilitate discussions on product safety as it pertains to portable electric heaters (e.g. space heaters).

What is this study about?

On behalf of CPSC, EurekaFacts is conducting focus group sessions with consumers who have owned a portable electric heater (e.g. space heater). The main purposes of the focus groups are to obtain feedback from consumers on issues related to product safety. The portable electric heater focus groups will help decision makers better understand consumer experience with these products, and the opinions and perceptions consumers have of them.

Where will the focus group take place?

Focus groups will be virtual and take place online using Zoom. The link to the session will be provided after participant confirms their participation. There is no need to download any software. Participants will be asked to sign into the session from a quiet and private a place with a reliable internet connection.

What will happen during the focus group (traditional vs. hybrid)?

If selected for a traditional focus group, a group of participants will be asked to discuss their experiences as a consumer of portable electrical heaters. A moderator from EurekaFacts will guide the discussion. All participants will be asked to freely offer their opinions, feedback, and input on proposed improvements to communications on safety. The focus groups will be recorded, though participant identities will remain confidential.

If selected for the hybrid focus group, participants will take part in a brief one-on-one virtual interview in a Zoom breakout room, followed by a virtual group discussion.

What do I do to prepare for the focus group?

To participate in the focus group, participants must have access to a tablet, laptop or desktop computer with a working webcam and microphone in addition to a reliable internet connection.

Participants will need to submit a completed consent form prior to the start of the session in order to participate. Instructions for joining the session will be sent to the participant in a confirmation email.

Will information be kept private?

Yes, all information shared in focus groups sessions will be kept confidential. Each participant will be assigned a unique identifier (ID) to be used for analysis, and their name will not be linked to their answers. All of the information provided by participants may be used only for statistical purposes and may not be disclosed, or used, in identifiable form for any other purpose except as required by law (20 U.S.C. §9573 and 6 U.S.C. §151). Each focus group session will be recorded to facilitate notetaking and analysis; no identifying information will be shared. If you have questions about your rights as a study participant, you can review the EurekaFacts, LLC Privacy Policy for details on our policies and procedures.

How long will the focus group last and when will it take place?

The focus group will last no more than 90 minutes. Sessions will be held at a date and time in which the majority of participants are available.

We ask participants to sign in 10 minutes prior to the start time to check that their technology is functioning properly and to allow ample time for troubleshooting. As we all know, technology can sometimes be unpredictable, and we would like to maximize the time we have together. An EurekaFacts staff member will be available to assist.

Is there an incentive for participating?

Yes. Upon completion of the focus group session, each participant will receive a $100 e-gift card. Please allow 7-10 business days for processing the e-gift card. Participants may choose to decline the gift card.

The e-gift card will be sent via email from Virtual Incentives. Please check Spam or Junk folder. Also please note that the virtual incentives expire after 6 months.

What are the possible risks of being in the study?

There are no known risks to participating in this voluntary study. 

Who can I contact with questions or for further information?

If you have any questions about the study, you can contact us at outreach@eurekafacts.com or call 240-403-1650 and ask about the “Portable Electric Heater Focus Group study”.

Can participation end early?

Participation in this study is completely voluntary. Participants have the right to refuse to answer particular questions. Participants may elect to withdraw from this study at any time and can leave the session early if they wish. If a participant chooses to leave early, we may need to reduce the incentive so that it is proportional to the level of participant participation.