Queen's University wants to hear from its young alumni, to learn where their degrees have taken them, and which Queen's experiences – inside the classroom and out – have been valuable in their lives and work.
The National Graduate Outcomes Survey (NGOS) reaches out to 2006 and 2007 graduates from programs at Queen's and 39 other universities across Canada. Graduates will be asked for feedback on their university experience and its value in their professional and personal lives. Queen's Office of Institutional Research and Planning played a key role in developing and coordinating the survey - the first of its kind in Canada.
"We've never surveyed alumni five or six years out before," says Chris Conway, Director of Institutional Research and Planning, who leads Queen's participation in the project. "Traditionally, we've surveyed incoming undergraduate students to find out why they choose Queen's. We survey students at the end of their first year, and again as they graduate, to get feedback on their experiences here at Queen's. Finally, we conduct an annual survey of alumni two years after graduation to measure early employment outcomes. But the NGOS will ask 2006 and 2007 graduates about much more than their employment situation. We're looking for information on civic engagement, the impacts of student experience on current activities and interests and subsequent educational activities. And of course, we want to know what advice and suggestions graduates want to share with us."
The inaugural survey will target graduates from undergraduate and professional programs, including Law and Medicine. Conway hopes to implement a parallel survey in the future to obtain information from the graduates of Masters and PhD programs.
"Data from the survey will be used for a variety of accountability, advocacy and quality improvement purposes," according to Conway. "Now, we know the overall employment rate of our graduates two years following graduation. But what about the ensuing three to four years? Do graduates change jobs? Careers? How well does their degree serve them as they make these transitions? To what extent are graduates engaged in social issues, and what value do they place on their degree in preparing them for this engagement? Do the answers to all these questions vary by program or degree? By student group? What do the experiences and suggestions of our graduates tell us about the way we design programs and services?"
Emails will be sent out between February 20 and 22nd to 2006 and 2007 grads, inviting them to take part in the survey created by the Queen's Office of Institutional Research and Planning. Watch for the email from Queen’s Provost Alan Harrison, with the subject heading: “Queen’s grad outcomes survey: have your say.”