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How could you use First Term Survey data in your unit?

What is the First Term Survey?

Six weeks into each new semester, the Office of Assessment invites all first-semester students, both first-year and transfer students, to participate in the First Term Survey. These data are used to guide important decisions regarding student success, both at the unit-level and the Division of Academic and Student Affairs leadership level.

The First-Year First Term and First Term Transfer Surveys collect data on student experiences with new student programming, acclimating to NC State, and experiences on campus. The survey also collects data on student attitudes including: living on campus, advising, counseling, academic support, leadership development, and sense of community, among others. It also serves to connect students with support resources based on their responses to the survey.

On Thursday, February 13, new spring-entry students will receive an email invitation to complete the First Term Survey. The more students faculty and staff encourage to respond to the survey, the more students the division can direct toward support resources and the more data we can use to improve student experiences.

How can I use the First Term Survey data to inform decisions within my unit?

The Office of Assessment website has all First Term Survey data reports publicly available. Units who are looking for more specific first term data to make decisions for their programs and practices can also request First Term Survey data by student demographic or participation in a program by visiting the Office of Assessment website. Additionally, the Office of Assessment will hold a First Term Survey Results workshop on February 20 in which participants can learn about the instrument, trend results from the previous five years, and work with faculty and staff to brainstorm ways to improve the experiences of first term students. Interested faculty and staff can register for the workshop through Reporter. Faculty and staff are also encouraged to send questions they want addressed in the presentation in advance. In the past, this workshop has been an opportunity to brainstorm new ideas and get feedback and collaborate with other faculty and staff in the division. Please reach out to Jordan Luzader ( for any questions or input.

What can I do to help the survey reach more first-term students?

This spring, new students will receive an email invitation from Dr. Zapata to complete the First Term Survey on Thursday, February 13, and will be reminded by the Office of Assessment to complete the survey in the weeks following. Please encourage your first-term students, both first-year and transfers, to complete the survey this spring. The emails students will receive include all details about survey participation, such as information about incentives and who to contact with questions.

More Information

The survey instrument and previous years’ data from the First Term Survey can be found on the Office of Assessment website. Please contact Samantha Rich in the Office of Assessment ( with any questions about the First Term Survey.