Survey of Students, Staff, Alumni and Faculty (College Survey Policy)
Approved by Executive Council on November 6, 2007
Statement of Policy
College Survey Council
The objective of the College Survey Council (CSC) is to assist in a coordinated approach to surveying of student, staff, alumni, and/or faculty opinion. The CSC will offer departments general guidelines and advice in the development and administration of surveys. The co-ordination of the survey process will also allow for the creation of an institutional database for related assessment and planning activities. Surveys conducted by individual faculty members for research or instructional purposes, or student evaluations of faculty will not be the responsibility of the CSC.
The CSC will maximize the benefits from surveys on campus by attempting to:
- act as a clearinghouse and consultant for departments/programs seeking to conduct surveys.
- eliminate redundant surveying.
- make completed survey results more available.
- consolidate campus survey results for consultation and further analysis as required to facilitate assessment and planning efforts, and when appropriate to assist in external reporting requirements.
On-Campus Survey Guidelines
- Committee on the Protection of Human Subjects (COPHS): All applications for conducting surveys must be approved by the COPHS. All college-wide requests for COPHS review are coordinated through the Office of Sponsored Research (x2155). Please obtain and complete the required paperwork from the Office of Sponsored Research. All surveys will require the approval of the COPHS before they are conducted.
- Submission of Survey Results: All on-campus survey results (raw data or summary) must be submitted (electronic or hard copy) to the Office of Institutional Research. A contact person's name as well as the principal investigator's name must be included in the submission. When submitting survey material, survey sponsors are responsible for ensuring appropriate protection of respondent identity and confidentiality in the accompanying report(s).
- Survey Database: A survey database maintained in the Office of Institutional Effectiveness will contain copies of the survey instruments, and summaries of findings and reports. This database is being developed to categorize, study, and archive survey and questionnaire administration parameters and results, as well as provide relevant information to individuals considering and designing future surveys.
- Survey Resources: For advice concerning the design of your questionnaire or survey instrument please direct your questions to either one of the following members of the College Survey Council: Dr. Robert Karp, Director of Institutional Effectiveness (4106) or Dr. Lenny Lock, Assessment/Data Manager (4071). College Survey Council member(s) are available to meet at the Department level for further overview and discussion of the campus survey policy. Contact Dr. Bob Davis (7702) for additional information.
The College Survey Council recommends that you review and follow the principles and general guidelines listed below to assist you in the development of your survey. Importance:
- Does it provide useful information for planning purposes?
- Does it provide useful feedback to those providing services to students, staff, faculty and/or alumni?
- Does it provide the college with useful information on the experience of students?
Content and Design of Survey:
- Is the survey well designed?
- Is the content appropriate?
- Are the questions easily understood?
- Is the survey too short or long?
- Does the survey follow an appropriate format? (e.g., multiple-choice questions, rankings, rating scales, open-ended questions. etc).
- Has the survey data collection process been well considered?
- Has a strategy been adopted to attain an acceptable participant response rate?
- Have you followed the procedures for protecting subject confidentiality for COPHS review?
- What is the target population?
- Will the entire population be surveyed, or a sample?
- Is the sampling methodology appropriate?
- When will the survey be conducted?
- Is it conducted at a time during the academic year when students are likely to respond?
- Does the survey overlap with other surveys?
- What is the intended impact of the study?
- What research questions are you attempting to answer?
- What resources will be needed in order to conduct the survey? (e.g., creation of mailing databases, designing the survey instrument, designing a Web application for the survey, conducting a survey, data entry, etc.)
For more information about Administrative Policies approved by Executive Council, please contact:
Sean Brian Dermody
Assistant to the Vice President for Administration
Management Services Office
Office: Kehoe 710-11
Phone: (518) 564-2539
Fax: (518) 564-2540