Online Poll of IUP Students, by the Numbers

By Diana Alcorn

The April 16-20 online survey of attitudes about IUP student government was sent to a sample of the university’s total enrollment. Of the 2,000 recipients of the seven-question survey, 95 answered, a 4.8 percent response rate.

Two previous surveys emailed in fall 2005 and in spring 2006 had similar response rates, although those were sent to all 14,000 IUP students. The fall 2005 survey more than 800 responses, a response rate of 5.7 percent. The spring 2006 survey had 741 responses, a rate of 5.3 percent.

Math professor Tom Short of the IUP Applied Research Lab managed the survey, which was hosted by StudentVoice, a Buffalo-based online campus-polling service. Short said he reduced the number of survey recipients to spare students from poll overload.

“I have decided to start recommending that surveys be sent out to samples of the population,” Short said. “Normally, even national surveys for things like polls before presidential elections only go out to between 1,000 and 2,000 respondents. We are trying to control the survey load being placed on our undergraduate students.”

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