Campus Climate Surveys

The Survey Research Laboratory has extensive experience conducting customized climate surveys for educational institutions. There are many advantages to working with SRL on a climate survey for your institution:

  • We will customize questionnaires to fit your institution’s needs. While we do maintain an archive of items used in the past in climate surveys, we’re sensitive to the fact that every institution is unique. We will work with you to tailor questionnaires and other materials to suit your specific needs.
  • We offer direct involvement by senior staff with years of relevant professional experience.
  • We are experienced with a wide-range of climate studies within small university units and across large, diverse institutions. Here are some examples:
  • In the spring of 2017, SRL is conducting the Academic and Work Environment Survey at Baylor University. This campus-wide survey is open to all faculty, staff, and students at Baylor, as well as the Board of Regents. While the survey instruments incorporated many of the same metrics used to assess the academic and work environments at other institutions where we have conducted climate surveys, we also tailored these instruments towards diversity issues specific to Baylor’s campus, based on a series of initial focus groups we conducted.
  • In the spring of 2017, SRL is conducting its second climate survey at Oakland University. The first was done in the spring of 2013. Over 2,000 students, faculty, and staff participated. SRL staff presented the results of the survey to multiple campus groups to highlight the key findings of the survey and to identify both areas of strength and those in need of improvement. The results provided the Oakland University administration with a benchmark by which to gauge the impact of campus initiatives designed to improve specific aspects of the climate.
  • In the fall of 2011, SRL conducted a climate survey of the entire University of Illinois system, covering the three main campuses, plus the regional campuses. All faculty, staff, and students were invited to participate. With over 17,000 responses across more than nine strata, the survey produced a large amount of information, providing invaluable insight into the lives of University of Illinois students, faculty, and staff.
  • In addition to large-scale, University-wide surveys, SRL has also conducted climate surveys with smaller subsets of the University of Illinois population.
  • In 2007, SRL conducted a study of academic professionals (APs) on the Urbana-Champaign campus. This study conducted was designed to provide the Academic Professional Task Force with quantitative information about APs’ experiences with various aspects of their work environment, such as promotional pathways, career assistance and professional development, the performance evaluation process, and facilities and work-life services available at the university. All APs at the university—4,183—were invited to take part in the study, and the responses we received from over 1,800 respondents were analyzed and presented to the taskforce, who were then able to make specific recommendations to the Provost. Even though not a true longitudinal study, we were also able to compare the results from this study with those from past two studies conducted in 1997 and 2002 to provide an understanding of the way in which satisfaction levels were trending.
  • In 2010, SRL conducted a similar study of academic professionals on the Chicago, Rockford, and Peoria campuses. The responses we received from over 1,200 respondents were used to prepare a report of APs’ overall satisfaction with their work experiences, and with specific aspects such as compensation, professional development, career advancement, and job security.
  • In 2004 and in 2011, SRL conducted a survey of all College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS) and College of Engineering (COE) faculty members about the climate at their workplace. The survey covered issues of diversity, inclusion, and the fairness and equity of rules and procedures for all faculty members, regardless of gender, race, or other minority group status. The results of the 2004 survey clearly suggested areas for improvement, and steps were taken to implement positive action in these areas. The 2011 survey assessed both participants’ awareness of and opinions about these changes, and also provide trend data for other items.

For more information, or to inquire about how SRL can help with your institution’s climate survey, please contact Sowmya Anand at sanand@uic.edu.