March 18, 2018

Placements & Salaries 2015: Survey Methods

Survey Methods

LJ contacted all 49 of the 52 LIS schools in the United States and offered each the opportunity to participate in the survey. Forty-three of these schools responded. Of these, 38 schools completed an institutional survey reporting on the demographics of their 2014 graduates. Thirty-four schools contacted their 2014 graduates and elected either to send their graduates a link to the LJ web survey or to collect paper surveys that were mailed to LJ. Nine schools instead decided to provide LJ with data the school collected from its graduates and submitted in a report to LJ: University of Buffalo, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, University of Michigan, UNC-Chapel Hill, San Jose State University, Simmons College, University of Texas-Austin, University of Washington, and University of Wisconsin-Madison. These reports did not always supply complete data.

The data analyzed for this article represents responses from 35% of the 4,331 graduates reported by the 43 participating schools. Among the surveys conducted by LJ, the response rate for 2014 graduates from each school ranged from a high of 77% to a low of 8.5%. Graduate response rates from data and reports supplied by schools ranged from 100% to 3.9%. Respondents could decline to answer any question on the survey and choose to leave the survey without completing it.

Four schools that were not able to participate last year, were able to do so this year: Queens College, University of Rhode Island, St. John’s University, and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

The following schools declined to participate, did not respond to calls for participation, or had no graduate participation: University of Arizona, University of Denver, Emporia State University, Kent State University, University of Maryland, North Carolina Central, and University of Pittsburgh.

Canadian LIS programs conduct their own survey and do not participate in the LJ annual survey. This includes programs at Alberta, British Columbia, Dalhousie, McGill, Montreal, Toronto, and Western Ontario. The University of Puerto Rico does not participate.

While this data provides a valuable overview of the graduates and their placements, there are research limitations that should be noted. Some graduates and some schools reported incomplete information, rendering some data unusable. For schools that did not complete the institutional survey, data was taken from graduate surveys and thus notfull representation of all graduating classes. Additionally, not all participants answered all questions.

This article was published in Library Journal's October 15, 2015 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Suzie Allard About Suzie Allard

Suzie Allard ( is Professor of Information Sciences and Associate Dean of Research, University of Tennessee College of Communication & Information, Knoxville. She is PI or co-PI on grants funded by IMLS, NSF, and other foundations. She is a member of the DataONE Leadership Team and the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations Board of Directors and the winner of the 2013 LJ Teaching Award.