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ERIC Number: ED511458
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 20
Institutional versus Academic Discipline Measures of Student Experience: A Matter of Relative Validity. Professional File. Number 114, Winter 2009
Chatman, Steve
Association for Institutional Research (NJ1)
The census survey of undergraduates attending a major research university system presents an opportunity to measure both disciplinary and institutional differences in students' academic experience. Results from nearly 60,000 responses (38% response rate) from the 2006 administration found greater variance among majors within an institution than between equivalent majors across institutions. Cluster analysis techniques were employed to establish disciplinary patterns, with traditional distinctions between hard and soft sciences generally supported. Reporting practices called into question range from institutional comparisons that ignore academic program mix and discipline to campus performance comparisons that do not recognize pedagogical differences by academic major. More specifically, these results suggest that calls for comparable institutional performance measures, as proposed by the Spellings Commission, must take into consideration disciplinary differences in instruction. (Contains 2 footnotes, 2 tables, and 9 figures.) [A version of this paper was presented at the SERU (Student Experience in the Research University) Project Symposium, Assessing the Undergraduate Experience in the Postmodern University, April 25, 2007, Berkeley, CA and appears as Research & Occasional Paper Series: CSHE.8.07, Center for Studies in Higher Education, Berkeley, CA. An earlier version of this paper was also presented in June 2007 at the 47th Annual Forum of the Association for Institutional Research in Kansas City, MO.]
Association for Institutional Research. 1435 East Piedmont Drive Suite 211, Tallahassee, FL 32308. Tel: 850-385-4155; Fax: 850-383-5180; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Association for Institutional Research
Identifiers - Location: California