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2012 National Survey of Student Engagement highlights engaged learning at Elon

NSSE logoElon’s position as a national leader in study abroad, internships, writing and other engaged learning activities is demonstrated in the data of the 2012 National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE).

NSSE is the most comprehensive assessment of effective practices in higher education, including data this year from 285,000 students at 546 U.S. colleges and universities. Elon students gave high marks to their experiences on each of five benchmarks of excellence:

  • Level of academic challenge
  • Active and collaborative learning
  • Student-faculty interaction
  • Enriching educational experiences
  • Supportive campus environment

The NSSE survey asked randomly selected freshmen and seniors key questions about their educational experiences. A total of 607 Elon freshmen and seniors participated in the survey, now in its 13th year. Compared with students at other schools in the NSSE survey findings, Elon freshmen were much more likely to:

  • Write both short and long papers for their courses
  • Make a class presentation
  • Work with classmates outside of class to prepare assignments
  • Spend more than five hours per week participating in co-curricular activities

Elon seniors far outdistanced seniors at other schools surveyed by NSSE in many categories. About 74 percent of Elon seniors said they had completed or planned a study abroad experience, compared with only 23 percent of seniors at other universities in the survey. Nearly 88 percent of Elon seniors had completed an internship or field experience, compared with only about 49 percent of students at other schools that were surveyed. Elon seniors were more than twice as likely to spend time participating in co-curricular activities, completing foreign language coursework and completing a culminating senior experience (capstone, thesis or comprehensive exam).

The 2012 NSSE report, which is sponsored by The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, was released Nov. 15. The study provides information to students and parents in the college search process and gives campuses insight into effective teaching and student learning. Full details of the report can be found on the NSSE Web site at: http://nsse.iub.edu. Elon routinely makes data from the NSSE survey available to the public via this special website.

study abroad statistics