At the University of Saskatchewan, we engage in surveys for assessment purposes, to identify program/service enhancements, and determine the needs of our community and the best way to meet those needs. Institutional Planning and Assessment (IPA) is responsible for the coordination and/or implementation of institutional surveys and surveys conducted by external organizations involving participants from our university. This is necessary to prevent redundancy and participant fatigue, to maximize response rates and to achieve representative samples. IPA is also responsible for ensuring that survey results and findings are made available to the university community to support planning and assessment activities. Information on the major survey initiatives is provided below.
National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)
The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE, pronounced "Nessie") is a survey that measures students' levels of engagement with their institution. The NSSE collects information from first-year and final-year undergraduate students across the United States and Canada about their participation in programs and activities that institutions provide for their learning and personal development. The survey is broadly categorized into ten Engagement Indicators (EIs) that are concentrated among four general themes: academic challenge, learning with peers, experiences with faculty, and campus environment.
Canadian University Survey Consortium (CUSC)
The Canadian University Survey Consortium (CUSC) is a survey designed to assess the Canadian university student experience, providing insight into the use of and satisfaction with services. The goal is to better understand student experiences at university and to provide benchmarks across time through the data collected. CUSC surveys operate on a three-year cycle, alternating between first-year, middle year and graduating students.
Provincial Graduate Outcomes Survey
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Advanced Education conducts a Graduate Outcomes Survey every five years of the province’s post-secondary graduates two years after they have completed their studies. The purpose of the survey is to gather information about Saskatchewan graduates’ perceptions and experiences. Information is collected on graduates’ level of satisfaction with their education, sources of financing for their education, level of education-related debt, and pre-and post-graduate mobility, as well as their education and employment outcomes.
Canadian Graduate and Professional Student Survey (CGPSS)
The Canadian Graduate and Professional Survey (CGPSS) seeks information about the experiences and satisfaction of professional and graduate students. Around 50 universities across Canada participate in the tri-annual survey with the next one taking place in 2019.
Campus Climate Survey
In Fall 2013, over 5,200 students completed the first ever University of Saskatchewan campus climate survey, answering questions about how welcomed, respected and supported they felt.
An initiative of the university’s third integrated plan, the survey included questions in five main areas: overall campus climate, campus experiences, classroom experiences and interactions with staff/faculty, helpfulness of support services, and how to improve the campus climate. Through this, detailed information was collected about how welcomed, supported and respected students feel, to inform future planning and initiatives at the University of Saskatchewan. The results of the survey were released on November 17, 2014.
To learn more about specific surveys we are involved with or to seek advice on best practices for conducting a survey, please contact the Assessment and Analytics team for assistance.