The Office of Institutional Research collects, maintains, analyzes, and reports data about Wabash for the purposes of regulatory compliance, as well as institutional self-study, decision making, and planning. The office assists with many types of projects, including but not limited to the following:
- Academic program review
- Grant support
- Pedagogical research
- Student success and retention
- Assessment design
- Survey instrument design
- Statistical analysis
There are a number of ways that the Office of Institutional Research can help faculty and staff find, collect, or interpret data for their projects. Below is a guide to the IR site that briefly describes what you will find at the links on the right side of this page. Feel free also to contact our office:
Smitty Horne Wood, Director of Institutional Effectiveness
Campus office: Center Hall 115
Guide to this site
Request data. This link functions much like the Help Desk ticket system in the Information Technology Services office. Clicking here will take you to an electronic form where you will specify the parameters of the data that you need. Submitting the form will send a data request “ticket" to the Office of Institutional Research.
Dashboards. "Dashboards" are brief documents showing current and historical values for key performance indicators across the major administrative units of the College: Academic Affairs, Advancement, Enrollment, Finance, Retention/Graduation, and Student Affairs. These documents are refreshed each October and are a useful reference for those looking for a range of basic metrics. Access to the dashboards is restricted to Wabash faculty and staff, and a login is required.
Common Data Set. The Common Data Set (CDS) is exactly what it sounds like: a set of institutional metrics that colleges compute and report on a common form annually, typically in the mid-to-late fall. You will find that the CDS answers quite a few basic questions about the College. Here you can view or download the last several CDS forms for Wabash.
Other external surveys. In addition to the Common Data Set, the College completes approximately 50 surveys each year for external entities. Some are required by statute. Others are part of information-sharing consortial arrangements. Still others provide institutional data that factor into college rankings or college-search publications. These surveys typically supplement the CDS metrics with additional data on the College. Here you can view or download some of these surveys that the College has submitted.
Student surveys. The College conducts several standardized surveys of its students every year. Here you will find several of those survey instruments, along with reports on the aggregated data. Although the raw data from these surveys are not publicly available, the Office of Institutional Research keeps these data and uses them to support academic program reviews and other faculty projects for which analysis of specific questions and/or student populations is helpful.
Institutional Research Committee. Even a small institution like Wabash is awash in data that must be constantly and carefully maintained in order to be useful. The Institutional Research Committee facilitates best practices in data management, and this link has information on committee membership and activities.
Data inventory, maintenance, and governance. Here you will find several documents produced by the Institutional Research Committee, including full inventories of external surveys that Wabash completes for outside agencies, internal surveys that Wabash administers to various College constituencies (e.g. students), and guidelines for maintaining data in Colleague. This link also includes data policy documents, including guidelines for conducting on-campus surveys.
Committee for Institutional Improvement. Formerly the Accreditation Committee, this group of faculty, staff, and administrators meets monthly to facilitate assessment activity across all units of the College. This link includes the Committee’s charge and current membership.
Links. An assortment of links to sites with publicly available data on colleges and universities, as well as links to resources on accreditation, higher education assessment, and institutional research.