Information and Data Management

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What web pages are open to the general public?
  2. What are SPU Facts?
  3. Where can I find information about Autumn Quarter student enrollment?
  4. Where can I find more detailed quarterly information about student enrollment?
  5. What are the most popular undergraduate majors?
  6. Where can I find information about the number of students admitted to a specific major or graduate program?
  7. What is the Meta Data Dictionary?
  8. What is the student-to-faculty ratio?
  9. What is the difference between headcounts and FTE (full-time equivalency)?
  10. What is the difference between full-time and part-time enrollment?
  11. What is the Common Data Set (CDS)?
  12. What is Consumer Information?

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1. What pages are open to the general public?
The majority of OIR’s webpage is open to the general public. The three web pages listed below are reserved for internal SPU audiences and have security protocols in place that limits access to:

  • Faculty & Staff
  • Deans & Department Chairs
  • Senior Leadership Team


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2. What are SPU Facts?
This is a quick reference guide available to the public that provides general information About Us including our Statement of Faith, Academic Profile, Enrollment Statistics, and other information.



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3. Where can I find information about Autumn Quarter student enrollment?
The Enrollment Stats found on SPU Facts provides a quick reference for official Autumn Quarter information. This source is updated annually in late October and includes:
  • Headcount by student level – undergraduate, post-baccalaureates, and graduate students
  • Student diversity -- ethnicity, gender, age
  • Commuter and residential student headcounts
  • New undergraduate student information including GPA and SAT scores:
  • Student outcomes:
    • Retention rates
    • 6-year graduation rates


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4. Where can I find more detailed quarterly information about student enrollment?
The general public may find information on OIR’s homepage under SPU Facts or Quick Stats. Detailed information is provided to employees via the Faculty & Staff website – employee profiles, campus facilities, and degrees awarded new undergraduate student profile, etc.


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5. What are the most popular undergraduate majors?
The top 10 majors are reported in the SPU Facts under Academic Profile. The Academic Profile also provides the number of academic programs, along with the list of undergraduate majors and graduate programs.


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6. Where can I find information about the number of students admitted to a specific major or graduate program?
There are several sources available to SPU Faculty & Staff by looking at the reports under Enrollment by Major/Minor or Graduate Program. Deans & Department Chairs have access to additional detailed reports about their programs, students, and intended majors.


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7. What is the Meta Data Dictionary?
This source is provides the approved definitions and metrics used in official statistical reporting and includes both external definitions approved by outside entities (e.g., Common Data Set, IPEDS – Interdisciplinary Post-secondary Educational Data Systems) and internal definitions approved by central administration. Annually the Meta Data Dictionary is reviewed by department heads responsible for collecting and reporting information, to verify the accuracy of the definitions and metrics for the subsequent year’s reporting processes.


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8. What is the student-to-faculty ratio?
There are various methods used to calculate this ratio for national comparisons (uses the Common Data Set definition) with peers as well as for internal reporting. Both the national (external) and internal definitions may be found in the Meta Data Dictionary.

The SPU Facts under the Academic Profile publishes the student to faculty ratio that based on the national definition used by peers and used in publications. Student Faculty Ratio External: Ratio of full-time equivalent students (full-time plus 1/3 part-time) to full-time equivalent instructional faculty (full-time plus 1/3 part time, excludes adjunct faculty).

While the national definition is an estimate based on what is known as of Autumn Quarter, Seattle Pacific has a metric used for internal reporting that is based on actual faculty activity throughout the fiscal year. Student Faculty Ratio Internal: Ratio of total student FTE to total faculty FTE.
  • Student FTE calculation = (undergraduate-student credit hours generated for 3 quarters divided by 45) + (graduate-student credit hours for 4 quarters divided by 36)
  • Faculty FTE calculation = (regular faculty FTE + paid class section faculty overload FTE + adjunct faculty FTE)
  • Student faculty ratio = student FTE divided by faculty FTE


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9. What is the difference between headcounts and FTE (full-time equivalency)?
A headcount is about people and may be duplicated or unduplicated, depending on the report. An unduplicated headcount counts a student or employee only once. Example: When reporting the number of students enrolled Autumn Quarter, each student is counted once.

A duplicated headcount may count a person more than one time, depending on what is being counted. Example: Department chairs prefer to report the number of students by major as a “duplicated” headcount in order to include all the students pursuing double majors in the final headcount.

FTE (full-time equivalency) is a calculation that combines full- and part-time student credit loads or faculty and staff workloads and equates those totals to a full-time number by using a specific formula.
  • For faculty, one FTE equals 11 contact hours per quarter and 33 per year.
  • For staff, one FTE is the number of normal hours worked in a fiscal year.
  • For undergraduate students, one undergraduate FTE equals 15 credit hours per quarter and 45 per year.
  • For graduate students, one graduate FTE equals 9 credit hours per quarter and 36 per year. FTE can be measured for a single quarter, an academic year (autumn, winter, and spring), or a fiscal year (annualized: summer, autumn, winter, spring).


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10. What is the difference between full-time and part-time enrollment?
This full-time definition is not the same as FTE (noted above). Full-time status for the purpose of receiving financial aid is based on student level and the number of credits enrolled in for a given quarter. For undergraduates, a full-time students takes 12 or more credits per quarter, while full-time graduate students take 6 or more credits. All other students are considered part-time.



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11. What is the Common Data Set (CDS)?
Many of the items and definitions in the CDS are used on the autumn surveys of several major publishers. The goal of the CDS is to improve the comparability of data reported by colleges and to ease each institution's burden through asking questions in a standard way across numerous surveys.



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12. What is Consumer Information?
The Higher Education Act-2008 requires all colleges and universities participating in federal student aid programs to disclose basic institution information regarding specific institutional policies, procedures and statistics. This page centralizes the information for current and prospective students at Seattle Pacific University.