HEDS Returning Student Survey
The HEDS Returning Student Survey is designed to:
- help students reflect on what they hope to achieve by attending college,
- prompt students to consider strategies that could improve their chances of achieving those goals, and
- foster a conversation on their goals and strategies with people on campus.
We usually design our surveys to give people useful information about what is happening at their institution and compare that with what’s happening at other institutions. This survey is different. We are concerned that COVID-19-related challenges of this spring coupled with uncertainty about the future might lead students to question the value of higher education or reconsider their educational plans. We understand that students are facing tremendous stress and uncertainty now. At the same time, we worry that short-term concerns and pressures might make students lose sight of their long-term goals.
With this as a backdrop, we designed this survey to help your students reconnect with the goals they identified for themselves when they chose to attend your institution. You can read more about the development of this survey here.
Using the Survey
The survey is for students who have already attended your institution and are eligible to return this fall.
You can administer the survey anytime between July 6-September 1, 2020. Please register at least two weeks before you plan to administer the survey, to allow us time to work through the administration details and testing with you. If you’re interested in using this survey for students who have decided to take the fall term off and plan to return in the winter/spring, please let us know.
The survey allows students to send their survey responses to particular people on campus so they can have a conversation with them about their goals and how to achieve those goals. Institutions may identify people/offices that students can send their survey responses to (e.g., a student’s academic advisor, the class dean, the career services office). Students may also identify another person on campus with whom they’d like to have a conversation. (See Questions 9-10 on the survey for more information.) When a student asks to have a conversation with people on campus about their survey results, those individuals will receive an email with a summary of that individual student’s survey responses.
You may add up to two supplemental questions to the survey. We want to keep the survey short, so students will be more likely to complete it.
You will have access to a report to see aggregated real-time responses to the closed-ended survey questions as students complete the survey. Students will also be able to see this real-time report after they complete the survey. Students will receive an email with a summary of their survey responses and a link to the real-time report. You can see a sample of the email that students receive here.
This survey has been approved by the Wabash College Institutional Review Board (IRB). The approval letter is available here.
The survey is free for HEDS members. For institutions that do not belong to HEDS, we charge $750 to administer the survey. We may need to charge large institutions additional fees depending on response rates. Please contact us to learn more.