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The 2009 WELS survey of incoming transfer students (the Survey) continues the Office of Survey Research’s (OSR) efforts to collect information on all students prior to the start of their academic careers at Western Washington University. This survey represents the initial contact in a longitudinal process that makes additional inquiries of transfer students when they graduate from the university and again one to two years after graduation. The purpose of the incoming transfer student survey is fourfold: (1) to assess student needs based upon their self-reported characteristics, perceptions, and concerns; (2) to provide data that can assist university assessment and accreditation activities; (3) to obtain baseline entry data that can be used as statistical controls in analyses that offset the inability to conduct randomized studies; and (4) to maintain an ongoing record of student knowledge acquisition, ability levels, and other general education outcomes that aid in addressing accreditation and accountability. OSR uses a mixture of online and telephone survey methodologies to obtain survey responses. Incoming transfer students who attended Western’s Transitions program were informed that they would receive an invitation through their Western e-mail to participate in the Survey at the conclusion of Transitions. Students not attending Transitions received an invitation through their external e-mail address. After the initial e-mail invitation, OSR sent reminder e-mails to non-respondents twice and then followed these with phone calls placed by WWU students encouraging individuals to complete the survey. These phone calls were followed by additional e-mails to both external and internal e-mail addresses. The survey was then left open until the weekend before Fall quarter courses began on campus. Of the 898 Fall 2009 transfer students, 534 responded to the Survey (a response rate of 59.5%). Of the 534 respondents, 533 provided responses to the final q








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