Two months ago, a contact person at one of our member system offices requested our help with two projects. They were looking at re-baselining their graduation initiative goals based on national comparative peer data (as required in 2016 state legislation) for first-time, full-time cohorts and transfer cohorts from two-year institutions. Institutional-level data were needed to inform the discussions of their trustees, campus presidents, provosts, and others tasked with developing comparison groups and updating student success goals.
The system office recognized that CSRDE held the only national source of transfer cohort outcome data, and that available CSRDE freshman cohort outcome data provided a more recent lens on four- and six-year graduation outcomes than data available from IPEDS sources. We responded and sent the details they needed within just a few days of releasing our 2016 CSRDE Retention Report, giving them the latest data to use for their analyses.
On a smaller scale, a member recently requested data that was grouped differently than presented in our annual report. We sent her the few data points she needed so she could report it to her boss, who was to share it with the Provost and Chancellor at her university.
In both cases, we helped our members meet their data needs by creating custom reports. Typically, however, members are able to fulfill requests by creating their own custom peer reports using our Online Quick Query System and the data given in the four annual reports.
If a faculty member applies for a grant in the STEM disciplines and needs national data for the proposal, participating institutions have the numbers at their fingertips. If the institution seeks data on how their community college transfer students are progressing compared to other institutions, a look at that report will give them what they need. But when they need more, we are here to assist.
Sandra Whalen, Director, CSRDE