Institutional Research, Planning, and Effectiveness
Assessment Surveys at UAlbany
**Current, Fall 2015**
Great Dane Welcome Assessment (September-October, 2015; Web survey of all entering students -- first-year and transfer)
UUP Albany Survey on Workplace Equity (September-October, 2015; Web survey of UAlbany professional staff
For more information on current surveys, as well as those from previous semesters, please click here: Current Surveys. (The most recent surveys will be at the top).
For reports on some of our most important institutional surveys, please click here: Assessment Surveys (The most recent surveys will be at the top).
Frequently Asked Questions:
"If the survey is confidential, why did the e-mail have my name and/or why do I need to log in?"
For most surveys we conduct at
UAlbany, we send e-mails with links that automatically log you into the
survey. Log-in is required to ensure the validity of the survey data --
to make sure that only UAlbany students, faculty or staff are taking
the survey and that no one takes it more than once. We use your name on
the invitation because it's more polite and welcoming than "Dear
Student." If the survey invitation says the survey is "confidential" but
not "anonymous" that generally means that we do retain your UAlbany ID
number in the survey data file, in order to be able to match your survey
responses with key academic and demographic variables without burdening
you with a much longer survey. Even though we have your ID number, we promise complete confidentiality --
any reporting of the survey data will be only in aggregate form. You
will never be personally identified in any way and your survey responses
will never become part of your student record.
For some surveys, such as the current UAlbany Survey on Mobile Device Security and the recently completed UAlbany Survey on Research and Scholarship Resources, we are able to make the survey data completely anonymous,
while still having the same log-in process as usual. In those cases,
the online system we use to send the e-mail invitations and host the
surveys keeps log-in information in an entirely separate data set from
the survey response data. It is impossible to match the two data sets.
Neither your ID number nor any other identifying information will be
included in the survey data set. In this way, we ensure that your survey
responses are both valid and completely anonymous.
"Why do you conduct surveys?"
The University at Albany
conducts a number of surveys of its students, faculty, staff and alumni
as part of its ongoing process of assessing our performance, and
identifying areas of institutional strength as well as areas which
require additional attention or policy change. These range from
comprehensive assessment surveys of the undergraduate or graduate
student experience, to quick, short surveys on a particular topic (for
example, most recently the NY-Alert system survey in October, 2008).
"What Surveys Are Happening Now?"
For a look of surveys going on at UAlbany this semester, please click here: Current Surveys (the most recent surveys will be at the top).
Policy on Surveys of UAlbany Populations
It is continuing policy that
all survey and focus group activity involving UAlbany students, faculty,
staff or alumni must be coordinated with the Office of Institutional
Research, Planning, and Effectiveness (IRPE).
- This policy applies even when you are surveying within your own unit of the University.
- This policy applies even to surveys and focus groups used only internally for assessment purposes.
- Exceptions are surveys:
(1) used only for course evaluation or teaching purposes; or (2)
involving the Psychology 101 student pool.
A copy of the most recent memorandum of this policy can be viewed here.
Obtaining Approval for Surveys of UAlbany Populations
As a first step, contact UAlbany's Office of Regulatory Research Compliance
to determine whether your survey or focus group activity requires IRB
approval. In general, surveys that are used only for internal assessment
purposes do not require IRB approval, but that is the IRB's
determination to make.
If you are going through
the IRB process, simply send electronic copies of all the files you are
submitting to the IRB to Joel Bloom at UAlbany's Office of Institutional Research, Planning & Effectiveness (IRPE), at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If the IRB determines
that you do not need their approval, please send all relevant
information about the nature of the research, the timing, information on
how participants will be recruited, including the text of all
recruitment letters, e-mails and posters, information on who will be
contacted, and a copy of all survey instruments to Joel Bloom at
UAlbany's Office of Institutional Research, Planning & Effectiveness (IRPE), at email@example.com.
For smaller projects, we
are generally able to let you know within 1-2 business days; larger
projects may require additional time to enable coordination with other
If you have any questions or concerns about Surveys at UAlbany, please contact Joel Bloom, IRPE's Director of Assessment and Survey Research.