FY11 Performance Dashboard - December 16, 2010
Educational Opportunity Details
The faculty and staff of Western Illinois University are committed to student success.
Special attention will continue to be paid to issues influencing student retention and graduation rates on the Macomb campus. While six-year graduation rates of minority students increased, all other retention and graduation rates decreased.
For the Macomb campus, six-year graduation rates were reported as the national reporting standard (i.e., 150% of the normal time-to-degree) for institutions that admit new freshmen.
In the Quad Cities, graduation rates of all students have improved. The campus is committed to improving retention and graduation rates to even higher levels. The Office of Academic and Student Services, for example, is increasing advising frequency and duration with new and prospective students.
For the Quad Cities campus, four-year graduation are reported. Since the Quad Cities admits undergraduates as juniors, four years is the 150% measure of the normal time-to-degree.
U.S. News and World Report uses the following methodology for the information in the table below. “The graduation rate indicates the average proportion of a graduating class who earned a degree in six years or less; we consider freshman classes that started from 1999 through 2002. Freshman retention indicates the average proportion of freshmen who entered the school in the fall of 2004 through fall 2007 and returned the following fall.” Western status compared to benchmark institutions will be shared with the 2011 visiting team from the Higher Learning Commission-North Central Association of Colleges and Schools to gain external perspectives on successful strategies to increase student retention and graduation rates.
First-Year Retention Rate and Graduation Rate
|Illinois Public University Subset|
|Six-Year Graduation Rate||58.1%||42.0%||57.4%||69.0%|
|All Illinois Public Universities|
|Six-Year Graduation Rate||58.1%||16.0%||50.1%||83.0%|
Retention Rate Benchmarks
|College of Charleston||81.5%|
|Sam Houston State||72.2%|
|College of Charleston||62%|
|Sam Houston State||44%|
Quad Cities Benchmarks
|Western Illinois-Quad Cities||62%|
To further understand trends in student retention and graduation, Western participates in the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), as student involvement and satisfaction with the educational process are correlates of academic achievement. NSSE provides comparative data for second-semester freshmen and second-semester seniors at Western compared to all other participating master’s granting comprehensive universities in five areas:
- Academic challenge or the degree to which students perceive the importance of academic effort and setting high performance standards.
- Academic and collaborative learning or measures of how intensely students were involved in their educational process and whether they applied what they have learned to different settings.
- Student-faculty interactions or the degree to which students interacted with faculty inside and outside the classroom.
- Opportunities for enriching educational experiences or the degree to which students engaged in curricular and co-curricular activities beyond classroom instruction. It also measures the extent to which students report exposure to different ideals and cultures other than their own.
Values at or above 100% in the table below (the University’s goal) show that reported student satisfaction is higher at Western than peer institutions. Western freshmen and seniors reported higher levels of engagement in student-faculty interactions than students at peer institutions. This includes discussing grades or assignments with an instructor, talking about career plans with a faculty member or advisor, and working with faculty members on activities other than coursework (committees, orientation, student life activities, etc.)
Western freshmen and seniors also reported higher levels of engagement in a supportive campus environment than students at peer institutions. Western students rate the quality of relationships with students, faculty, and offices and the institutional environment promoting student academic and social success at levels higher than students at peer institutions
A commitment to the individual learner and educational opportunities characterize Western’s educational environment. Both Macomb and the Quad Cities experienced increases in the percent of classes with enrollments under 30.
|Number of Sections||4,933||4,980||5,134||5,143||4,982|
|Percent of Classes Less Than 30||73.9%||76.5%||78.1%||80.9%||81.6%|
Quad Cities Campus
|Number of Sections||476||517||534||603||627|
|Percent of Classes Less Than 30||92.6%||94.0%||93.1%||94.4%||95.2%|
Student-to-Faculty Ratios - Fiscal Year 2009
|Illinois Public University Subset||16:1||13:1||16:1||19:1|
|All Illinois Public Universities||16:1||16:1||17:1||19:1|
|College of Charleston||16:1|
|Sam Houston State||20:1|
Quad Cities Benchmarks
|Western Illinois-Quad Cities||11:1|
|University of Baltimore||18:1|
The University’s high-quality academic experience produces high levels of alumni satisfaction. The percent of alumni donating to the University is a proxy for student satisfaction with the educational experience. Western has the highest level of alumni donations for the Illinois public universities, and is third among benchmark institutions.
Percent of Alumni Donations - Fall 2009
|Illinois Public Universities Subset||13%||4%||8%||13%|
|All Illinois Public Universities||13%||1%||7%||13%|
Benchmark of Alumni Donations
|College of Charleston||10%|
|Sam Houston State||8%|