HEDS Alumni Survey
The HEDS Alumni Survey, available in an undergraduate and an advanced degree version, asks alumni about the quality and impact of their educational experiences, including cocurricular activities such as internships, study abroad, and community service. The survey also asks alumni to evaluate the impact of their education on their postgraduate critical thinking, problem-solving, and other learning outcomes. Finally, they are asked about postgraduate employment, college satisfaction, and college debt.
The HEDS Alumni Survey asks alumni to report on five dimensions of their experience:
- Good Teaching and High-Quality Interactions with Faculty
- Challenging Assignments and High Faculty Expectations
- Interactions with Diversity
- Growth on Intellectual Outcomes
- Growth on Civic Outcomes
Beginning in 2022, we added a section on leadership to the undergraduate version of the survey. This section measures two dimensions of leadership—leadership aspirations and leadership motivations. All participating institutions will receive summary data on this new section in their report. For full details on the scales and purpose of these two measures, please visit the HEDS Research Projects page.
We recommend that you administer the undergraduate version to alumni 1, 5, and/or 10 years after graduation. While you may administer the survey to alumni who graduated at other times, we only provide comparison data on these three cohorts.
Advanced Degree Version
Advanced degree alumni include graduates from master’s and doctoral programs, professional programs such as dentistry and medicine, and advanced degree certificate programs. The advanced degree version can be administered to alumni who graduated at any time.
Registration Deadline Change
We are now requiring that you register at least seven weeks (35 business days) before the day you want your survey to start. With the high demand for our surveys, this new timeline ensures we can do a good job of administering your survey for you. We urge you to download and read the survey information sheet by clicking on the “Survey Options, Policies, and Fees (PDF)” button found in the Downloads section of this webpage. This document details all the survey options available to you, as well as our expectations, practices, fees, and terms of service.
Click on the following questions to learn more.
You can administer the HEDS Alumni Survey for any 3–6 week period between October 23, 2023, and June 28, 2024. The latest possible date to begin administering the HEDS Alumni Survey is June 9, 2024. If you wish to administer after this date, you will need to register for a 2024-2025 HEDS Alumni Survey.
Please be aware that you must register at least seven weeks (35 business days) prior to the date on which you plan to begin administering the survey.
All participating institutions will receive the following for each version of the survey they administer:
- A report that compares the responses of your alumni to those of all other participating institutions’ alumni on all survey questions and indicators.
- A real-time report – an online report that will give you a live summary of responses to some of the closed-ended survey questions.
- Unit-record SPSS and Microsoft Excel files with your institution’s survey data.
- We will send your unit-record data files within 10 business days after your survey closes.
YES! Here’s how:
- We insert your institution’s name at the top of each page of the survey
- You can customize the survey invitations and reminders
- You can add custom, institution-specific questions at the end of the survey
While you can add supplemental questions to the end, we do not modify our survey questions or response options. In order for us to offer the benefit of comparative data between participating institutions in our survey reports, the questions and response options have to be the same across all the colleges and universities using the survey.
- Survey base cost – $2,300
- Survey base cost for HEDS members – $575
These prices include up to 10 supplemental questions. There is a discount for administering both versions of the survey and some custom options for additional fees. You will find all survey options and fees in the survey information sheet. Please click on the “Survey Options, Policies, and Fees (PDF)” button in the Downloads section of this webpage.
To learn more about becoming a HEDS member, please visit our Join HEDS page.
Michael Thompson, Illinois Wesleyan University
“The HEDS Alumni Survey is unique because it gets into academic data and not just employment outcomes. We like that it touches on satisfaction, student-faculty interaction, and mission and value issues.”
Diane Saphire, Trinity University
“We liked the question that asks how different experiences contributed to alumni’s learning and personal development. We ended up using data from that question in a recent strategic plan, which calls for a new center focused on study abroad and international experiences in response, in part, to how high those experiences were rated.”
Susan Warner Taylor, Baldwin Wallace University
“We use the HEDS Alumni Survey for academic assessment, as it provides evidence for our university learning outcomes. We like being able to align survey items with our outcomes, then filter the results by major and share them at the program level.”
Jon Christy and Nan Hibbs, Luther College
“We like that we were able to analyze the HEDS Alumni Survey data by college major. By doing so, academic departments could see where they were in comparison to the college as a whole.”
Charles Clark, Knox College
“The questions about how their undergraduate experience at Knox impacts their personal development and knowledge are very important and useful to us.”