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Policy on Institutional Surveys

Policy Category: Academics 

Effective Date: 3-28-2024 

Responsible Officer: Assistant Provost for Institutional Effectiveness & Planning 

History: New Policy 

Responsible Office: Institutional Effectiveness & Planning 

Location: Link


The establishment of a process and single point of contact for conducting surveys of the Wentworth community.


This policy applies to faculty, staff, students, and contract partners, when any of the following conditions are met: 

  • Surveys are administered to the Wentworth community, including demographic sub-populations and samples.
  • Surveys are used for school, unit, or campus-wide planning, assessment, improvement or promotion.




The purpose of this policy is to foster a survey climate that yields high-quality data that is then available to the campus community for decision-making. 

The objective of research surveys at Wentworth is to obtain actionable information to advance student and institutional success. Consequences of an unstructured survey environment include: 

  • low response rates due to institution-wide over-surveying, a lack of contact strategy planning, and survey fatigue; 
  • compromised data due to poor survey design by individuals inexperienced in survey research; 
  • incomplete research projects and little sharing of findings due to inexperience and a lack of planning; and 
  • most concerning—institutional decision-making based on biased findings. 

This policy sets forth procedures to: 

  • manage campus survey activity through coordination, scheduling, and reduced redundancy; and 
  • make available consultation on survey design, list building, contact strategies, administration, analysis, and sharing procedures. 


  • Survey: A method of gathering information using relevant questions with the aim of understanding populations as a whole.  
  • Research: The collecting of information about a particular subject. 
  • Survey Research: The process of collecting data from a predefined group with the ultimate goal of uncovering insights. 
  • Employee: Any individual employed full- or part-time by Wentworth. 
  • Contract Partner: Outside organizations that, through their work, have the ability to interact with Wentworth students and/or employees. 
  • Institutional Research Board (IRB): University committee responsible for reviewing and approving applications for research projects involving human subjects. 
  • Wentworth Community: Wentworth employees, students, former students who have not yet graduated, and alumni. 


The Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Planning (OIEP) will coordinate and support surveys of Wentworth employees, students, former students who have not earned a degree, and alumni. The OIEP is charged with fostering a favorable campus survey climate, including: 

  • In partnership with Marketing & Communications, overseeing a campus-wide process of scheduling proposed surveys to minimize survey conflicts. 
  • Reviewing proposed surveys and providing guidance and support for implementing survey research best practices. 
  • Referring projects to the Institutional Research Board (IRB) if the project appears to require it. 
  • Notifying and consulting with units that have substantial oversight of intended survey populations. 
  • Hosting and/or encouraging that surveys are hosted on the preferred university platform (currently Qualtrics) so that results are not lost due to employee turnover. 
  • Ensuring that results are analyzed, shared with appropriate stakeholders, and available to inform continuous institutional improvement.  
  • Referring significant projects to Marketing & Communications for consultation on contact strategies and results sharing.   


  • Instructors’ surveys of students in their courses for informal instructional use.     
  • Point-of-service satisfaction or evaluation surveys for users of specific services or attendees of specific events. 
  • Student organizations endorsing surveys of their own members. 
  • Surveys of applicants or admitted students who are not yet enrolled. 

Additional Information & Related Documents

Interpretation & Revision

Any question of interpretation regarding this policy shall be referred to The Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Planning. OIEP will be the final authority regarding the interpretation of this Policy. 

This policy shall be reviewed every three years; however, minor changes and updates can be made at any time. 

Wentworth will apply the policy in place at the time it receives a report concerning the respected policy. 

Additionally, in instances where two or more policies are implicated, a case-by-case determination will be made to determine what policy will be used. 

Review and Revision History

This Policy was drafted by representatives from Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, Institutional Advancement and External Relations, and Enrollment. It was reviewed by Cabinet and approved by the President on 3-28-2024. 

This is a new policy.