Institutional Research FAQ

photo of jordan hall entranceLocated in Jordan Hall, Room 153, the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment (OIRA) is the official source for key institutional data.  Our mission is “to foster a data-driven culture and facilitate strategic planning and decision-making by providing accurate, relevant, and unbiased data; offering higher education research expertise and statistical consulting services; and improving teaching and learning by assisting academic departments with program reviews and other assessment efforts.”  

As our name implies, OIRA’s primary services can be categorized into institutional research and assessment.   

Reporting Institutional Data

As your go-to source for official Butler University data, OIRA routinely provides information about students, faculty, and other general Butler facts. Many questions about enrollment, retention, and degrees awarded can be answered by our Fact Book and Common Data Set (CDS).  However, if you cannot find the data you need, see the next section. 

Completing Custom Data Requests and Analysis

In addition to the standard external reporting of institutional data, OIRA also fields several requests for particular data and/or analytics needs.  Please submit a request form if you are looking for institutional data unavailable in the University Factbook or CDS. 

Providing Survey Consultation and Administration

OIRA also provides survey-related services, including consultation and survey administration.  We work with our colleagues across campus to help meet their survey needs.  Requests range from providing feedback on a draft survey instrument to helping design and administer the final survey.  OIRA can also assist with the analysis of survey results if needed. 

Please contact us through our service request form link above if you need help designing, implementing or scheduling your survey. 

OIRA also coordinates the administration of large University surveys to help minimize survey fatigue. If you want to survey a large number of students or faculty and staff, please check with Laura Daily ( first.  She maintains OIRA’s master survey calendar.  You do not need to check with us for classroom-based surveys. 


Coordinating Annual Assessment of Student Learning Outcomes

OIRA coordinates the annual assessment reporting of all academic and co-curricular units.  Assessment reports are currently due on March 31.  The Director of OIRA also chairs the University Assessment Committee, comprised of representatives from each college and co-curricular units with student learning outcomes. 

Supporting Academic Program Reviews

Several of Butler’s colleges maintain specialized accreditations for the programs they offer.  However, university programs without specialized accreditation must complete academic program reviews on a seven-year cycle.  OIRA maintains a program review calendar in consultation with College Deans or their designees.  As departments prepare for their upcoming reviews, OIRA provides each department with a multi-year statistical overview.  This overview provides trend data on faculty staffing levels, teaching credit hours, number of majors, student credit hours, GPA by class level, first-to-second year retention, number of degrees conferred, and graduation rates. 

Once program review processes end, OIRA also serves as the repository for crucial program review documents (i.e., departmental self-study, external reviewer’s report, action plans).   

Facilitating Student Feedback on Teaching   

OIRA also helps facilitate the administration of campus-wide course evaluations each academic term.  We work with representatives from each college and the Core and Honors programs to confirm which courses need to receive surveys.  Next, we set up and schedule end-of-course surveys in the Class Climate system, and finally, we prepare faculty reports at the end of each term for dissemination. 


In addition to institutional research and assessment services, the Director of OIRA also interacts periodically with our regional accreditor.  Butler University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC)The Director of OIRA currently serves as the accreditation liaison officer for Butler.  In this role, the director (along with colleagues in the Division of Professional Studies) communicates and collaborates with the HLC to ensure they are notified and have accurate, up-to-date curricular documentation for all of our new programs and any significant changes to any existing academic programs. 

To learn more about us, please visit our website.