Cooperative Institutional Research Program Freshman and Senior Surveys (CIRP)

The Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) is the largest and longest running national assessment study. Administered by the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at UCLA, the CIRP Freshman Survey is designed to provide information on incoming first-year students to colleges and universities. The CIRP freshman survey involves normative data on some 1,800 institutions and over 11 million students. This normative data provides a detailed profile of each year’s entering college students. UIS receives a profile of their entering freshman class along with a national normative profile for similar types of institutions. This profile provides data on demographics, expectations of the college experience, secondary school experiences, degree goals and school plans, college finances, attitudes, values, life goals, and reasons for attending college. Items from previous years are repeated to help institutions assess trends in the characteristics, attitudes, values, and aspirations of their entering freshmen. CIRP has been administered to all incoming freshmen at UIS (2002–08), and the data have been used to inform strategic planning in both student and academic affairs.

The College Senior Survey (CSS) is administered to all UIS students who came to UIS as a first-time, first-year student. It provides information on a broad range of student outcomes, including both academic and campus life experiences. It also offers feedback on students’ post-college plans immediately following graduation. The College Senior Survey will be administered to exiting seniors at UIS beginning in Spring 2009, and the data will be used to inform strategic planning in both student and academic affairs.