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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Gallup and Purdue University Partner to Measure College Outcomes

Gallup is partnering with Purdue University to build and conduct the largest nationally representative study of college graduates in U.S. history. The Gallup-Purdue Index will be the first measure that evaluates the long-term success of graduates in their pursuit of “great jobs” and “great lives.” This index will also provide higher education leaders with productive insights for meaningful performance improvements.
While there is almost universal agreement that the ultimate outcome of a college degree is the increased probability of getting a good job and having a better life, there has never been a tool to measure these critical outcomes.
“Decades of Gallup research have helped measure and quantify whether a person has a great job and a great life,” said Brandon Busteed, Executive Director, Gallup Education. Right now, there isn’t a college or university in the country that can tell -- from a research-based perspective -- to what degree their graduates have great jobs and great lives. Together with Purdue, and soon other leading higher ed institutions, Gallup is excited to get at what really matters.”
The Gallup-Purdue Index -- made possible, in part, by Lumina Foundation’s $2 million grant to Purdue University -- provides a definitive measure of how college graduates are doing on five key dimensions of well-being: purpose, social, physical, financial, and community. It will also measure their workplace engagement, including things such as whether they like what they do, do what they’re best at, and have someone who cares about their development.
Purdue will also be the first university to contract for a simultaneous sampling of its own graduates, to determine how they are faring in life and at work compared to these national norms.
“As it finally did in K-12, an accountability era has begun for higher education,” said Mitch Daniels, President, Purdue University. “Students and their parents deserve to know with confidence whether a college they are considering has a trustworthy track record of developing successful, engaged, and fulfilled graduates. Businesses and other employers are eager for better tools that tell them at which schools their recruiting is most likely to yield top new associates. The Gallup-Purdue Index aims to help answer these two critical and appropriate sets of questions.”
Gallup invites institutions across higher education to join this research collaborative to measure these outcomes among their students and alumni starting this academic year. Gallup will work with these colleges and universities to drive continual process improvement throughout the student experience. The findings of the inaugural index will be available in early spring of 2014, with public findings reported on annually.
Yesterday, Gallup and Purdue University officially announced the index and partnership. Watch Busteed deliver the keynote address below.

To learn more about how the index will measure the overall success of America’s college graduates, read the Wall Street Journal opinion piece, A Real Measure of Higher Ed Success, co-authored by Daniels and Gallup Chairman and CEO Jim Clifton.
For colleges and universities interested in joining the Gallup-Purdue research collaborative, please contact: Kristen Lloyd at 202.715.3183.
Join the conversation on Twitter: @GallupEducation and #GallupPurdue


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