Bellarmine's Official Policy on Survey Administration:

The Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness shall coordinate all surveys of Bellarmine community members. IR&E shall have primary responsibility for administering surveys or evaluations where the purpose is academic or operational assessment, accreditation, compliance, program evaluation, or other research connected to the University’s institutional effectiveness efforts. Survey sponsors shall be responsible for demonstrating the extent to which collected feedback leads to meaningful and quality continuous improvement practices.


Outline of Survey Steps

The summary below is a guide to the general process of launching a survey or evaluation at Bellarmine University when it falls under the official policy. Please ensure you have carefully reviewed and completed each of the steps. Staff in IR&E are available to help at each point in the process.

  1. Review Bellarmine's official policy on survey administration, as well as any corresponding policies that govern surveys and evaluations (e.g. IRB).
  2. Visit the survey calendar and view the Survey SOP Examples document to help prepare your survey request submission to IR&E.
  3. Submit the survey request form.
  4. Coordinate logistics with IR&E staff for next steps.

Survey Administration Protocols

IR&E will operationalize its responsibility to coordinate surveys through the following practices:

Survey Policy

IR&E will ensure publication of the official survey policy on Bellarmine’s website and other venues as appropriate (Employee Handbook, Student Handbook, Human Subjects – IRB, etc.).

Guidance and Documentation

IR&E will maintain a repository of supplemental guidance documents, such as:

  • ● Guidance and training for the community about effective research design, survey methodology, dissemination of results/findings, and developing action steps from survey data for use in continuous improvement.
  • ● Information about compliance with regulatory and statutory requirements, e.g. use of financial incentives, preserving respondents’ rights and confidentiality, referral to the Institutional Review Board (IRB) when appropriate, etc.
  • ● IR&E’s survey administration protocols (this document) as well as information about the availability of data sources for community use, submission deadlines, recommendations to avoid oversampling of populations by administering surveys to the smallest number of subjects necessary to ensure validity, providing secure access to collected data and reports generated from those data, etc.
Survey Calendar

Maintain a survey calendar for the community’s use and information, including surveys determined to be exempt from IR&E oversight/administration.

Note: The Survey SOP Examples document contains examples of the types of surveys that must be administered by IR&E versus surveys that are exempt from or eligible for expedited IR&E administration.

Methodology Consulting

IR&E will provide survey research design and methodology consulting for community members, including personalized group or individual training, instructional resources curated its website, etc.

Survey Request Form

IR&E will require prospective survey/evaluation sponsors to submit a survey request form. The submission form will include:

  • ● Proposed start/end dates for the survey;
  • ● Research question and topic/theme;
  • ● Audience, subject, and/or participants;
  • ● Instrument items; and
  • ● Intended action steps to be taken at the conclusion of the survey.

    Note: These are the minimal required items. Additional data may be required for IR&E to effectively administer the survey.
Survey Administration

IR&E will review submissions of the Survey Request Form, providing an opportunity to:

  • ● Determine the research category into which the survey belongs.
  • ● Identify IR&E’s anticipated level of involvement in administering the survey:
    •       • Exempt from IR&E administration
    •       • Eligible for expedited IR&E administration
    •       • Requiring full IR&E administration

      Note: The Survey SOP Examples document contains examples of the types of surveys that must be administered by IR&E versus surveys that are exempt from or eligible for expedited IR&E administration.
  • ● Evaluate the survey request in the context of current research and data collection needs of the community, prioritizing requests as appropriate to maintain standards outlined in the Policy and supplemental guidance documents published by IR&E.
  • ● Offer feedback on research design and request revisions, if applicable.
  • ● Communicate a final approval/denial decision to the requestor in a timely manner, as well as conveying information about timeline and administration.
  • ● Populate the survey calendar with public information about approved surveys.

    Note: The Office of IR&E will identify a list of surveys that do not need to be submitted through the Survey Request Form. Some examples include but are not limited to: surveys that evaluate specific programs or campus services at the conclusion of the program or service; class projects surveying students only within that class; and data collection for administrative purposes only (e.g. scheduling and logistics, event registration, etc.).

    The Office of IR&E will also compile and maintain a list of prior survey requests that were deemed exempt or eligible for expedited administration. This list will serve as a reference for future survey requestors and will continue to grow over time.
Post-Survey Action Items

IR&E will develop and implement further policies and practices in collaboration with campus stakeholders to ensure that survey sponsors follow through with previously identified action steps as they pertain to institutional effectiveness (assessment, accreditation, strategic planning, compliance, etc.).

Note: As new campus-wide policies and practices emerge, IR&E reserves the right to amend some or all of the above protocols. IR&E will strive to make these changes as seamless as possible and will solicit feedback from the community before incorporating any major change.

Professional Development

IR&E staff will participate in regular professional development to stay informed on current and emerging survey, evaluation, and reporting tools and technologies, as well as both traditional and experimental methods and techniques for analyzing survey data.

Revision History

February 8, 2021 Presented initial draft procedures to Institutional Effectiveness Committee (IEC) for review