If you have a special data request or would like to administer a survey on campus please click on the link below to provide the Office of Institutional Research with some of the details.  An email request will be automatically generated and sent to the IR staff.

Survey or Data Request

Recurring Surveys

  • 1-Year-Out Graduate Survey 
  • 5-Year-Out Graduate Survey 
  • Cooperative Institute Research Program (CIRP) Freshman Survey 
  • Senior Survey 
  • National Survey of Student Engagement 
  • Admitted Student Questionnaire 
  • HERI Faculty Survey 
  • Special or Ongoing Surveys 

 1-Year-Out Graduate Survey

Survey Population: Most recent graduating Dickinson class.

Frequency and Method: Administered online annually throughout the summer months.

Affiliations: None. There are alumni surveys available from AICUP, HEDS and others however; the benefits of implementing one of these surveys do not outweigh the benefits of our own, free survey from which we have established longitudinal data.

History:  Early version implemented in 2001 for the Class of 2000 by Dr. Bill Bellinger. It underwent some significant changes in 2005 and also went online. The earlier versions included question aimed at both the six months and one year marks. In 2010 we will stop asking questions about six months after graduation and focused solely on the data one year after graduation.

Brief Description: The online survey asks recent grads about their current academic and employment status. The details for the academic portion include: part-time or full-time status, where they have attended school since graduation, what they are studying, and what if any degrees they have completed. For the employment section we gather information on the part-time or full-time status, the business sector, position title, salary, company information and what sources (if any) they used to acquire their current position (i.e. alumni contact, job fair, Dickinson Works, etc.).

Survey Instrument, Reports and Data: A recent version of the survey and the detailed reports are listed below and the raw data files are archived electronically in the IR Office.

Click here for the most recent 1-Year-Out Survey Report.

5-Year-Out Graduate Survey

Survey Population: Dickinson class five years after graduation.

Frequency and Method: Administered online annually throughout the summer months.

Affiliations: None.

History: This format is very similar to the 1-Year-Out Survey. The first class to receive this survey was the Class of 2000, and was implemented in the summer of 2005. This class was also the first to receive the initial version of the 1-Year-Out survey back in the summer of 2001.

Brief Description: The online survey asks recent grads about their current academic and employment status. The details for the academic portion include: part-time or full-time status, where they have attended school since graduation, what they are studying, and what if any degrees they have completed. For the employment section we gather information on the part-time or full-time status, the business sector, position title, salary, company information and what sources (if any) they used to acquire their current position (i.e. alumni contact, job fair, Dickinson Works, etc.).

Survey Instrument, Reports and Data: A recent version of the survey and the detailed reports are listed below and the raw data files are archived electronically in the IR Office.

Click here  for the most recent 5-Year-Out Survey Report.

Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) Freshman Survey

Survey Population: Incoming First-Year Students

Frequency and Method: Administered annually during FY Orientation; in person using a “Scantron” form. In past years we have received response rates in excess of 90% on this survey. However, until just recently (2008) we have not obtained a very high percentage of the students who have allowed us to affiliate their survey responses with their individual identification number (less than 40%). Having this approval allows us to correlate their responses on the CIRP freshman survey with the HERI Senior Survey allowing trend analysis and analysis of individual change.

Affiliations: The survey is administered through the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) of UCLA.

History:  Dickinson College has been administering this survey for over 40 years.  Although some questions have changed, been added or removed, the overall survey instrument has remained fairly consistent.  We have electronic data for the CIRP (back to 1995), and for previous years there are hardcopy files and reports in the IR Office. 

Brief Description: From their website: Each year, approximately 700 two-year colleges, four-year colleges and universities administer the Freshman Survey to over 400,000 entering students during orientation or registration. The survey covers a wide range of student characteristics: parental income and education, ethnicity, and other demographic items; financial aid; secondary school achievement and activities; educational and career plans; and values, attitudes, beliefs, and self-concept. Published annually in "The American Freshman," the results from these surveys continue to provide a comprehensive portrait of the changing character of entering students and American society at large. (http://www.heri.ucla.edu/cirpoverview.php).

Reports and Data: Each year the data are added to the existing file in order to examine trends and compare the responses to other recent FY classes. The trend charts and summative comments are created and archived each year and are available upon request.

(Link to PDF of the survey)

Senior Survey

Survey Population: Graduating seniors (for example August 2008, February 2009 and May 2009)

Frequency and Method: HEDS Senior Survey is implemented online on even-numbered years, alternating with the HERI CSS Survey on the odd years, which is also administered online. Typically we get a very good response rate (above 90%) because the seniors are offered a free cap and gown if they complete the survey.

Affiliations: Higher Education Data Sharing Consortium (HEDS) and the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) of UCLA.

History: The HEDS Senior Survey was first conducted in 1988. An in-house survey was implemented from 2004 through 2007. In 2008 when we began to alternate the HEDS Senior Survey with the HERI College Senior Survey. Both instruments are very similar in content and both allow for analysis with a selected, but different comparison group.

Brief Description: A primary focus of both surveys is to collect information regarding the graduates’ future plans for continued education and employment. Additionally, some questions are aimed at assessing how well Dickinson has prepared them for the future. Other questions ask other details about their Dickinson experience, like their study habits, extracurricular activities, study abroad experience, and satisfaction with various aspects of their college experience. Finally, there are some demographic questions such as race, gender, major, parent’s education level, and grade point average.

Reports and Data: Charts and summative comments are available upon request. Additionally, there are peer reports provided by HEDS or HERI depending on the year for the selected comparison group.

(Link to PDF of the survey)

National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)

Population: First-Year and Senior students

Frequency and Method: An online survey is now being administered every three years. A First-Year cohort takes the survey in the spring and again in the spring of their senior year. The instrument is administered by NSSE through the University of Indiana. We provide a list of ID’s and emails. They facilitate the invitations and reminders using the scripts we provide. We have begun to supplement the reminders with personal notes from both the Provost and the President.

Affiliations: The NSSE Institute works with institutions and other organizations to collect and disseminate research on promising practices and to assist schools in using data for institutional improvement and student success initiatives. (Description as it appears on their website).

History: The NSSE has been used nationwide since 2000. We first used it in 2002, and again in 2006, 2009 and 2012. Over 500 schools also used the NSSE in the spring of 2012. Over this time period the online survey and the automated institution and peer reports have improved dramatically.

Brief Description: The NSSE has been accepted across the nation in higher education as one of the best assessment tools to measure student engagement. The following paragraph is from the NSSE website and describes their primary objective.

The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) obtains, on an annual basis, information from hundreds of four-year colleges and universities nationwide about student participation in programs and activities that institutions provide for their learning and personal development. The results provide an estimate of how undergraduates spend their time and what they gain from attending college. Survey items on The National Survey of Student Engagement represent empirically confirmed "good practices" in undergraduate education. That is, they reflect behaviors by students and institutions that are associated with desired outcomes of college.

Reports and Data: NSSE provides several reports (benchmarks, trends, and means) in both hardcopy and electronic form. Additionally, we can create charts and means analysis that compare the responses from the same cohort as first-year students and as seniors. These reports, spreadsheets and charts are available upon request.

(Link to PDF of the survey)

Admitted Student Questionnaire

Population: All admitted students (admitted and enrolled)

Frequency and Method: Annually, administered online between June and August.

Affiliations: Admitted Student Questionnaire – CollegeBoard, Admitted Student Survey – Human Capital Research Corporation.

History: There have been three different survey instruments used over the years, all aimed at collecting the same basic information. The Survey of Admitted Applicants (2003-2007) was developed in-house and administered online. Admitted Student Questionnaire adopted in 2008 is a product of CollegeBoard and also administered online. In 2009 we used the Admitted Student Survey provided as part of the consulting agreement with Human Capital Research Corporation (HCRC) in 2009. All have similar purpose, but differ slightly in content and design. With the current implementation schedule we will administer CollegeBoard’s Admitted Student Questionnaire every other year. If possible we will continue to use the HCRC survey as long as we retain their services for other admissions and enrollment projects.

Brief Description: The objective of all three of these surveys is to find out what admitted students think about our academic programs, facilities, admissions literature and processes, financial aid packages, and cost of attendance, etc. The ASQ compares our results to five other selected institutions and provides details regarding our top admit overlap schools. In all of these surveys there is analysis that compares the responses of the enrolled students versus the non-enrolling students which help to create financial aid, admissions, and college relation strategies.

Reports and Data: The CollegeBoard provides the raw data and a detailed report in both hardcopy and electronic form. HCRC provides us with the raw data and several reports in the form of slide show presentations. HCRC also does some analysis regarding “parental educational level” and “academic achievement levels” (SAT bands). All these reports and presentations are available upon request.

(Link to PDF of the survey)

HERI Faculty Survey

Survey Population: All current full-time and part-time faculty.

Frequency and Method: Online administration every three years.

Affiliations: Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) of UCLA. In some years HEDS also collects data from participating institutions and creates peer reports. They did so in 2004.

History: This survey has been administered at Dickinson College in 1998, 2001, 2004 and most recently in 2007. The instrument has changed very little since the 2001 administration.

Brief Description:  From their website:  The HERI Faculty Survey is designed to provide colleges and universities with timely information about the attitudes, experiences, concerns, job satisfaction, workload, teaching practices, and professional activities of collegiate faculty and administrators. Information resulting from the survey can be used to facilitate self study and accreditation activities; inform campus planning and policy analysis; enhance faculty development programs; and improve students’ educational experiences.

Reports and Data: Extensive charts and data are available for the two most recent administrations of this survey and are available upon request.

(Link to PDF of the survey)

Special or Ongoing Surveys

Please email  for more details.

Special or Ongoing Surveys

Bringing Theory to Practice Survey (Fall 2005 – Spring 2009)

The purpose of this study is to evaluate, as a group, the engagement and well-being of Dickinson first-year students and their transition into their second year of college. This project is being conducted to learn more about what students are involved in and how students are faring as they begin college and beyond. Because this is a longitudinal study, we are also interested in the ways in which students’ attitudes and behaviors may or may not change over time.

Engagement Survey

The purpose of this survey is to assess the level of engagement of students in several key areas: academic, civic and with regard to sustainability/global sensibility. A subset of the Bringing Theory to Practice Survey will provide some longitudinal data in the academic and civic engagement areas.

Campus Diversity Survey – Student version (Spring 2009)

The purpose of this survey is to assess student attitudes, behaviors and experiences regarding multiculturalism. This survey is being administered at a number of other colleges and universities.

Campus Diversity Survey – Faculty version

The purpose of this survey is to assess campus faculty attitudes, behaviors and experiences regarding multiculturalism. This survey is being administered at a number of other colleges and universities. Results will be used in conjunction with the student version of this survey to gain an overall sense of the diversity issues on campus.

Academic Advising Exit Survey

The purpose of this survey is to capture the primary reasons students depart Dickinson College prior to graduating, their plans after leaving as well as to collect demographic information.

Multi-Organizational Board (MOB) New Student Survey

The purpose of this survey is to hear from the incoming first-year students about what campus social events and activities they would prefer. The information is used by the MOB for planning and programming for the upcoming year.

Admissions Visitor’s Survey

The purpose of this short survey is to collect information from prospective students and their parents regarding their Dickinson visit or Admissions event; how well they liked the campus, if their questions were answered, their impressions of the academic program, facilities and campus in general.

Alumni Weekend Survey

The purpose of this survey is to ask alumni how well they enjoyed their recent alumni weekend events and for them to assess the schedule, activities and accommodations.

Alumni and Parent Strategic Planning Outreach Initiative

This survey form is used by Advancement Services administrators to collect information from interviews of both alumni and parents regarding their perceptions of Dickinson College, to assess their level of engagement and priorities for the college as well as their potential for current and future giving.