Current Surveys

The Office of Institutional Research, Analytics, and Consulting surveys Bowdoin students throughout their time at Bowdoin and beyond. 

The process begins with the Survey of New Students which incoming First Years take before they arrive on campus and concludes with alumni surveys after they graduate. In addition, at some point during their time at Bowdoin, students participate in surveys asking for their opinions and experiences about issues such as relationships, sex, health, and wellness. Periodically, IRAC also surveys faculty and staff.

Survey of New Students (annual)

For over 50 years, incoming First Year students have been surveyed the summer before they arrive on campus. Students are asked about high school experiences, academic and personal preparedness for college, expectations for college, and values and goals. Prior to 2013, Bowdoin administered the CIRP Freshman survey and now uses the COFHE Survey of New Students. The survey response rate is approximately 95%.

Among incoming first year respondents
Interested in doing community service
Interested in doing research with faculty
Seeking skills for lifelong learning
Were leaders in high school

Senior Survey (annual)

Senior Survey results

The Senior Survey asks graduating seniors to reflect on their time at Bowdoin and provide feedback on their experience. It covers academic and non-academic aspects of a liberal arts education. The survey includes questions about student satisfaction, self-assessment of knowledge, skills and abilities, and post-Bowdoin plans, including graduate school and employment. The response rate is 95-98%.

Alumni Survey (annual)

In 2012, Bowdoin began surveying alumni who had graduated from Bowdoin one, five and ten years earlier. The surveys collect information about post-Bowdoin careers and graduate school. In addition, alumni are asked about skills and abilities, balance and priorities in their lives, and their opinions of Bowdoin. Beginning in fall 2018, only graduates who are one year out of Bowdoin will be surveyed annually. Graduates who are five and ten years out of Bowdoin will be surveyed periodically. Recent survey response rates have been about 30%.

Alumni Survey results

Enrolled Student Survey (every four years)

This is a COFHE survey which Bowdoin administered for the first time in spring 2019. The survey measures student engagement, asks about learning and satisfaction, and includes questions about faculty, advising, health, and stress. First Years, Sophomores and Juniors will participate in this survey, but not Seniors.

Integrated Health Survey (2023)

The Integrated Health Survey was developed in 2023 with Student Affairs to combine two prior surveys (Health & Wellness Survey and Bowdoin Experiences and Attitudes about Relationships and Sex), which were last fielded in 2018. The survey covers the following five topics: stress management; alcohol and other drugs;  mental health; sexual health; and relationships, boundaries, and consent. Knowing the physical, mental, and emotional health of Bowdoin students will inform program design, prevention planning, and campus safety measures.

The National Collegiate Campus Climates Survey (2021)

Bowdoin participated in the National Collegiate Campus Climates (NACCC) survey in the fall of 2021. This national survey, created by the USC Race and Equity Center, included six content areas essential to understanding racial climate on campus. All on-campus students (18 and above) were invited to participate in the survey and share their experiences of as well as feelings about racial equity at Bowdoin.

Digital Excellence Commitment (DExC) Faculty Survey (2022)

On behalf of the Digital Excellence Commitment (DExC) Subcommittee of the Committee on Teaching and Classroom Practice, the faculty were surveyed in December of 2022 about DExC. Specifically, faculty and instructors who taught in the fall were asked about the effect DExC had on their teaching, how students used the MacBook Pros and iPads for their courses, and to comment on the Digital Excellence Commitment. The survey had a 47% response rate.

View Survey Results (PDF)

Faculty and Staff Transportation Survey (2015, 2018, 2022)

Bowdoin periodically surveys faculty and staff to support efforts to promote better public transportation options for the Bowdoin College and Brunswick community. Most recently, all Bowdoin faculty and staff were surveyed in fall of 2022 with a response rate of 39%.