NSSED 2013 Results: Experiences With Faculty

Experiences With Faculty is the NSSE sub-scale pertaining to the perceived quality of interactions between those two prominent groups on any university campus. This sub-scale is divided into two different dimensions dependent upon the context of the interaction.

Student- Faculty Interaction

The first dimension considered encompasses all social interactions students might have with faculty. These social exchanges may take place in the classroom, but may also take place in a faculty office, during an extracurricular activity, or any other social context.

Figure 13 summarizes the results from first-year students. Overall, these students rated the quality of these interactions just below the scale midpoint or 30. Though USAO seems to have a slightly more positive score than our 3 comparison groups included in the report, these differences are not statistically significant.

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NSSE 2013 Results: Learning With Peers

Today I review the NSSE 2013 results for the Learning With Peers sub scale. This section of the survey asks students to rate the extent to which their university offers opportunities to work with their classmates as part of the learning experience. The sub scale is divided into two (2) dimensions: Collaborative Learning and Discussions With Diverse Others.

Collaborative Learning

Figure 9 displays the average Collaborative Learning score for USAO and each of our comparison groups (for more information about these groups, visit NSSE 2013 Results: Academic Challenge). Analysis failed to uncover any statistically significant differences between these groups. In fact, the same can be said for senior scores for this dimension (see figure 10). Across classifications and comparison groups, students report having opportunities for collaborative learning at about the same rate. Placing these scores in the context of the full scale, we can see that all these are clustered at around the scale midpoint– halfway between sometimes and often.

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NSSE 2013 Results: Academic Challenge

Understanding NSSE Results Reporting

You may not be too familiar with how the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) reports the results of its survey. This would make you like most people- myself included before I started telling people about USAO’s results. So, before getting into the main subject of today’s post, allow me to share a few conventions that provide important context within which to consider the numbers that follow

Tip #1: Each NSSE sub-scale is made up of different components; sub-sub-scales, if you will. Since that is pretty hard to say (and to type), I will refer to these as dimensions, though in practice we might use other terms for these. Check out the NSSE Engagement Indicators page for background on each of these dimensions.

  • Academic Challenge
  • Reflective and Integrative Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Quantitative Reasoning

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Why Institutional Research?


For my first regular entry, I thought it appropriate to talk a bit about why Institutional Research (IR) is important.
USAO allocates a non-negligible portion of its limited resources towards our activities (that you, by the way), so it is important that we provide something of value. Moreover, it is important for those paying the bills (students, parents, Oklahoma and United States taxpayers) to know what it is they are purchasing. Rather than focus on the specific tasks and reports, they are legion and are generally of interest to a very specific (small) audience, I wish to speak about our efforts with a bit more breadth.IMG_3695 Continue reading →

Why Assessment?

Why collegiate assessment? Why write about assessment? Why give any tests at all or ever again? These were questions posed to me about my new position at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma by colleagues as I left my last job. They were confused about why we should worry about testing college students. The questions hit hard and left me wondering myself.IMG_3697 Continue reading →

In Defense of Testing; Introduction

‘Test’ tends to be a dirty word. In the classroom it is a looming threat, in congress a shield, and in the Assessment Center our bread-and-butter. Few four letter words conjure such strong polar reactions. Thus it is a hard subject to brooch with how emotional discusses become. It is my belief however that testing has a solid, important, and needed place in education.IMG_3694

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The Technology of Assessment: Akindi Grading

Want to use Scantron tests in your class room but don’t have the money to buy a scanner, forms, or time to learn to use them? There is a new simplified testing solution just for you! It is called Akindi and it allows you to print scanner answer documents and grade them for free.050813_1641_AkindiUpdat2 Continue reading →