ERIC Number: ED452768
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001
Reference Count: N/A
Mandatory Surveys: Do They Negatively Bias Results? Institutional Research Report Number 4-00-1.
East Carolina Univ., Greenville, NC.
Institutional researchers and others at East Carolina University have been concerned that requiring students to complete a survey, the institutional evaluation form, will have a negative effect on the ratings that students give the university. The responses to electronic forms of this survey completed by seniors and by sophomores are grouped with responses from other universities and colleges in the North Carolina state system, so a high response rate is desirable. To study the effects of the mandatory survey, survey responses were tabulated by the dates they were submitted, on the assumption that students who responded late in the process did so because they felt forced. Students were also given the opportunity to register their comments about the survey. Very few comments about the survey requirement were recorded, although more than 3,000 students completed the surveys. There was little evidence that the mandatory nature of the survey depressed rating on the sophomore survey or on the 1999 graduating senior survey. However, the later responses for spring 2000 graduates were clearly and consistently lower for most of the questions on the survey. The results are somewhat counter-intuitive because sophomores were more "forced" (unable to register without completing the survey) than seniors, and the differences may result from the way students were informed of the requirement. Sophomore requirements were well publicized, but seniors were informed through a letter attached to the application for graduation, and most late responses were the result of sending lists of students who had not completed the survey to the departments. An appendix contains some comments about the surveys. (Contains 10 tables.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: East Carolina Univ., Greenville, NC.
Identifiers - Location: North Carolina