Glossary of Terms

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Academic Year - The time period containing the academic sessions held during consecutive Summer, Fall, and Spring semesters.


Bearhaus - Baylor University's online data warehouse and reporting system. It contains direct access to integrated data taken from multiple sources and stored in one location. University administrators, faculty, and staff have access to the warehouse to provide them with the information they need. Additional data is added to the warehouse as new questions and needs are identified.


CDS (Common Data Set) - a collaborative effort among data providers in the higher education community and publishers as represented by the College Board, Thomson Peterson's, and U.S. News & World Report. The combined goal of this collaboration is to improve the quality and accuracy of information provided to all involved in a student's transition into higher education, as well as to reduce the reporting burden on data providers.

The CDS is a set of standards and definitions of data items rather than a survey instrument or set of data represented in a database. Each of the higher education surveys conducted by the participating publishers incorporates items from the CDS as well as unique items proprietary to each publisher. Consequently, the publishers' surveys differ in that they utilize varying numbers of items from the CDS.

Census Date The official reporting date for institutional data. The census date falls on the twelfth class day of the fall and spring semesters and on the fourth day of the second summer session. It provides a statistical portrait of the institution at a fixed point in time. Data collected on the census date are reported to internal and external authorities. The fall census date is reported for most purposes and is used to measure changes in enrollment. Spring enrollment is usually lower than fall enrollment because students graduate in December and the number of new students entering in spring semesters is small compared to fall semesters.

CIP (Classification of Instruction Programs) Discipline Code These codes represent a nationally used, common taxonomy for the classification of higher education degree programs. The CIP is the standard method for reporting academic programs to the Federal government.

CIRP (Cooperative Institutional Research Program) Freshman Survey - Each year, approximately 700 two-year colleges, four-year colleges and universities administer this survey to over 400,000 entering students during orientation or registration to collect data about the characteristics, attitudes, and goals of students.

Credit - Recognition of attendance or performance in an instructional activity (course or program) that can be applied by a recipient toward the requirements for a degree, diploma, certificate, or other formal award.

Credit Hour - A unit counted toward completion of an academic program. Each course is worth a number of credit hours (also known as "credits"). The number of credit hours reflects the number of hours a student spends in class for that course per week.


Degree Seeking Student - Students enrolled in courses for credit who are recognized by the institution as seeking a degree or other formal award.

Dual Enrollment the simultaneous enrollment of a student at a high school and in a college course which is offered through the regular campus schedule.


Ethnic / Racial Classification - Categories used to describe groups to which individuals belong, identify with, or belong in the eyes of the community. The categories do not denote scientific definitions or anthropological origins. Ethnicity is self-reported. A new methodology for reporting categories was created by the federal government and was adopted at Baylor in October 2010. Individuals are asked to first designate ethnicity as: Hispanic or Latino (A person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.)


Not Hispanic or Latino

Second, individuals are asked to indicate one or more races that apply among the following:

American Indian or Alaskan Native - a person having origins in any of the original peoples of North America (including Central America) and who maintains cultural identification through tribal affiliation or community recognition.

Asian - a person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian Subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Black or African American - a person having origins in any of the black racial group of Africa.

Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander a person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands.

White - a person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, North Africa, or the Middle East.


FSSE (Faculty Survey of Student Engagement) - designed to measure faculty expectations of student engagement in educational practices that are empirically linked with high levels of learning and development. Faculty members are asked questions on a variety of educational topics that mimic the questions students are asked in NSSE. The survey also collects information about how faculty members spend their time related to professorial activities and the kinds of learning experiences their institution emphasizes.

First-Time Freshman - An undergraduate student newly enrolled at Baylor University and not previously enrolled in a postsecondary degree program. Includes students enrolled in the fall term who attended college for the first time in the prior summer term. Also includes students who entered with advanced standing (college credits earned before graduation from high school).

Fiscal Year - A twelve-month period running from June 1st through the following May 31st.

FTE (Full-Time Equivalent) Employee - A numerical designator for an appointment based on 100% for full-time. An FTE for a full-time employee is 1.00. (Two people each serving in half-time faculty positions would equal, together, one FTE faculty position.)

FTE (Full-Time Equivalent) Student - A measure of student enrollment calculated on the total number of student credit hours. Every 12 credit hours at the undergraduate level equals 1.0 FTE, every 10 credit hours in the Law School JD program equals 1.0 FTE, and every 9 credits hours in all other graduate programs equals 1.0 FTE student.

Full-time Faculty Baylor University employees who are employed full-time and carry an employee classification of contract faculty, senior lecturer, full-time lecturer, temporary full-time lecturer, or visiting faculty in the Baylor human resource database.

Full-time Staff Baylor University employees who are employed full-time and are not classified as faculty.


Graduation Rate - The percentage of a student cohort graduating four, five or six years from the date they entered.


Headcount - Number of individual people, whether full-time or part-time.


IPEDS (Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System) - the core postsecondary education data collection system for the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).


Legacy - A student whose relative has attended, or is attending, Baylor (grandparent, mother, father, sibling, aunt, uncle, husband, wife, cousin, or child).


Major Field of Study - Students are classified as majors according to their selection of a primary field of study. This field must be selected from approved programs within each degree program.


Non-Degree Seeking - A student enrolled in courses for credit who is not recognized by the institution as seeking a degree or formal award.

Non-Resident Alien - A person who is not a citizen or national of the United States and who is in this country on a visa or temporary basis and does not have the right to remain indefinitely.

NSSE (National Survey of Student Engagement) - NSSE annually collects information at hundreds of four-year colleges and universities about student participation in programs and activities that institutions provide for their learning and personal development. The results provide an estimate of how undergraduates spend their time and what they gain from attending college.


Postbaccalaureate Student - A student with a bachelor's degree who is enrolled in courses not to be credited toward a graduate degree or for graduate credit.


Retention rate the percent of students remaining within an institution once matriculating through the institution.


SEDA Reports (Statistics on Enrollment and Degrees Awarded) - comprehensive statistical reports covering an entire academic year. Included are breakouts of degrees awarded by gender and ethnicity, term statistics for the summer, fall, and spring of the academic year, and historical data.

Student/Faculty Ratio - The number of FTE undergraduate students per FTE faculty.


Tenure - A status granted to professors that gives protection from summary dismissal.

Transfer Student - An undergraduate student newly enrolled at Baylor University who was previously enrolled in a postsecondary degree program at another institution.

Trends a report that presents comparative information about enrollment and student characteristics, faculty and staff, and the University's financial status over a seven year period.

Institutional Research

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