Faculty, staff and students are often interested in obtaining existing institutional data or gathering new data for research and reporting.  The Office of Institutional Planning and Effectiveness and the Office of the Registrar work collaboratively with users to provide information in a consistent and timely way, while ensuring that proper privacy and ethics laws are maintained.


Existing Student Data 

Faculty may be interested in examining course enrollment data. Several sources of data are already available for use including the SourcebookCollege Navigator and Common Data Set, which are located on the IR website. For example, data on total enrollment, enrollment in majors and degree completion by major already exist. Check to see if the information that you need is available by navigating to the right menu bar of the Home Page or clicking a link to the documents cited in the previous sentence.

Information about faculty or staff size, college finances or other operations must be obtained through the Office of Human Resources or other offices. In addition, the Sourcebook, College Navigator and Common Data Set include a great deal of information about our campus. The College Navigator also allows you to compare Muhlenberg to other campuses selected by you.

If the student-level data that you require is not already available, please email Stacy Moran at [email protected].

Someone will reach out to you within a few days to discuss your data request. 


Administering a Survey or Focus Group 

In order to ensure consistency for internal survey  and focus group administration, minimize the occurrence of survey fatigue, reduce oversampling of various College constituencies, increase survey response, and to improve the overall quality and effectiveness of questionnaires distributed in support of College business.  Routine surveys of Muhlenberg students, parents, faculty, staff, and alumni provide essential feedback on academic, educational, professional, and similar experiences.  These results are vitally important and carefully considered.  This policy attempts to ensure high quality and sound conduct.

Proposals for campus-wide surveys administered to all members of the Muhlenberg community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni) or a subpopulation of the community (first year students, full-time faculty, etc.) should be sent to the Dean of Institutional Research, Assessment and Effectiveness, for review, schedule coordination, and approval in order to coordinate survey administration across campus.

Role of the Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Planning in Survey Administration

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Planning provides assistance to researchers to help identify and locate appropriate sources of institutional data that may already be accessible and germane to a research inquiry.  Additionally, the Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Planning oversees institution-wide coordination of surveys of students, faculty, staff, and alumni.  The data from these surveys offer analytical support for various planning and assessment activities on campus.  

The College participates in a number of national surveys.  Check this website for information about the different types of national surveys that we administer and as needed, we can make these results available to you.


Surveys targeting an entire population of students, employees, or alumni as participants must be approved in advance, unless they meet one of the following exceptions:

  • Surveys/evaluations sent only to persons who have used a given service or office, or attended a specific program/event AND for which the survey author already has the email contact AND for which no invitations are sent to non-users or non-participants.
  • Surveys from faculty or staff committees soliciting input from their colleagues.

Submitting surveys/focus group protocol for review

The checklist of items to submit when completing an online survey request includes:

The Survey Name

  • The Survey/Focus Group Sponsor(s)
  • The objectives of the research
  • The purpose of the research (federal/state requirement, strategic planning, assessment, etc.)
  • A description of the targeted population(s)
  • A final version of the online survey instrument to be used
  • A summary of proposed survey, invitation, and/or reminder timing
  • The proposed text of all e-mail invitations and reminders to be used

Please Note:  Formal review of a request may take up to two weeks once all materials are received.  Researchers looking to conduct surveys should carefully plan their research timelines before making a request.  For further information, please contact the Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Planning at [email protected] 

Additional Requirements

Once a survey request has been approved, researchers must follow the established Institutional Review Board (IRB) process, as outlined here:


For questions specific to IRB, please contact Dr. Kenneth Michniewicz, Chair of the Board.

Internal Surveys

Muhlenberg College offers an online survey software platform (Qualtrics) to Muhlenberg faculty and administrative staff to support academic and administrative assessment activities.  Qualtrics is purchased by the Office of Information Technology (OIT).  Technical aspects of creating a survey are supported both by Qualtrics support and OIT’s Instructional Technology and Digital Learning (IT/DL) group.  This service allows for the creation, distribution, tracking, and summary of online surveys.  It has the capability to build surveys with several question types (including single choice, multiple choice, yes/no, rating scales, skip logic, open ended).  Survey invitations may be emailed to targeted groups or links may be embedded into websites for completion online.  All data are automatically and conveniently stored in spreadsheet format. 

While IT/DL might assist with Qualtrics account access and may provide orientation to software operation, the Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Planning will assist with matters of survey design, question formulation, appropriate sample size, planning survey solicitation, and results analysis.  The launch and administration of surveys will be the responsibility of the researcher or in some cases, the coordinating department or unit.