About Data Comparisons
A central element in transparency is the reporting of institution data from tests and surveys conducted nationwide among college students and alumni. These include a test of general education skills including critical thinking, reading, writing and math; a survey indicating the level at which students are engaged in the learning process; and a survey on the degree to which students are satisfied with their educational experiences.
Regarding the national surveys in particular, many of the questions pertain to experiences at traditional institutions such as those relating to on-campus facilities. Thus, only those items that have the greatest relevance to distance and online colleges are included. The one survey for which information is currently provided for all participating institutions is the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE). The results of this survey provide an estimate of how undergraduates spend their time and what they gain from attending college.
In the charts below, provided in PDF format, results gathered from Excelsior’s students is shown in comparison with all students nationwide. Keep in mind that the national data reflects the opinions of students from institutions of all types and sizes, campus-based and distance-learning, and both traditional aged and nontraditional students. Excelsior’s students are primarily working adults pursuing their degrees on a part-time basis.