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Boston - Pre-Conf Workshops

Pre-conference Workshops



NEAIR membership is required in order to attend a pre-conference workshop; however, conference registration is not required.

Half day workshops cost $85; full day workshops $160; and, Newcomers workshop $120 unless otherwise noted.


Saturday, December 3rd

1:00 – 4:00 pm

Newcomers to Institutional Research, Part I......... $120

Jessica Shedd, National Center for Education Statistics;

Terra Schehr, Loyola University Maryland


This workshop is designed for new practitioners and addresses key components of IR including: defining critical issues; identifying data sources; developing standard institutional information/reports; and conducting effective assessment/evaluation activities. The workshop will be taught by persons with experience in public and private higher education institutions and in national education policy. Please note there are two parts to this workshop (Part II is on Sunday morning).

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Institutional Effectiveness (✱Laptop required)....... $85

Brian Smith, GeoDecisions

In this workshop Geographic Information Systems (GIS) will be discussed and demonstrated. The workshop will demonstrate how GIS is being used throughout industry and provide an introduction to the technology as well as brief hands on experience. Open discussion will allow participates to ask questions about the technology and how to apply GIS to higher education.

Taking the Next Step: Career Management in IR..... $85

Mitchell Nesler, Empire State College

Institutional research is a hot field – career opportunities abound. What do you need to do to take the next step? Will you be ready? This workshop is designed to assist mid-career professionals in IR as they consider career management issues in a highly interactive format. Various types of critical skills and experiences will be discussed.

Course Embedded Assessment 101........................ $85

Cherry Danielson, Carleton College

This session provides IR staff with tools and language to work with faculty regarding embedding assessment in their courses. Participants will clarify the relationship between course-level and program-level assessment. They will explore ways to implement that relationship and help faculty to discover how existing course work can also document programmatic level outcomes.

Advanced Statistics for IR: (Laptop loaded with SPSS 19 required)................... $85

Mary Ann Coughlin, Springfield College


This workshop will provide an overview of the applications of Analysis of Variance and Factor Analysis in Institutional Research.

Sunday, December 4th

9:00 – 12:00 noon

Newcomers to Institutional Research, Part II (Continuation from Saturday Afternoon)

Jessica Shedd, National Center for Education Statistics;

Terra Schehr, Loyola University Maryland

Using Environmental Scanning and Forecasting to Improve Strategic Planning................................. $85

Joel Lapin, The Community College of Baltimore County


Participants will have knowledge and skills for understanding, conducting and effectively using environmental scanning which results in improved strategic plans.

Introduction to Dashboards Using Excel (✱Laptop required/Excel 2007 and higher required)............... $85

Craig Abbey, University at Buffalo

This workshop covers how to create a dashboard in Excel 2007/2010 with various layouts and formatting options, including high quality graphs.

Prerequisite: Participants should have some working knowledge of Excel 2007/2010.



Testing for Moderating and Mediating Effects Using Regression Analysis (✱Laptop required)....... $85

Betsy Carroll, York College of Pennsylvania


Intervening variables (moderators and mediators) must be considered when testing models using regression. This workshop will explain the theory behind these variables and show participants how to test for them with regression analysis.

Prerequisite: Participants must have knowledge of statistics and research methods, particularly regression analysis. Participants must also know how to run and interpret regression analysis.



An Introduction to R and LaTeX for Institutional Research (✱Laptop requried).............. $85

Jason Bryer, Excelsior College

This workshop will provide an overview as well as hands-on exercises for using R and LaTeX to perform data analysis and report generation. Participants will learn to perform basic statistical analyses in R and to generate reports with LaTeX in spreadsheet, presentation, and document formats.

IR, Assessment & the IRB ........................ $85

Curtis Naser, Fairfield University

This workshop will examine in detail the relationship between IR, assessment and the human subjects review process of IRB’s. We will examine in depth the regulations and how they do and do not apply to typical IR and assessment activities. Return to your campus prepared to educate your IRB!

Sunday, December 4th

1:00 – 4:00 PM

Keeping Your Projects Under Control: Managing Your Projects with Free Software Tools (✱Laptop required)...................... $85

Daniel Nugent, Pennsylvania State University


Readily available and easy-to-use tools can simplify and improve version control and issues tracking throughout the "life cycle” of IR projects. This workshop will show how software tools can be used to track changes to documents and programs; strengthen documentation; and enhance communication among IR staff who collaborate on projects.

Qualitative Analysis Methods, or, What to Do with Comments.......................... $85

Carol Trosset, Hampshire College

This workshop will teach a structured method for analyzing comments from surveys or interviews. The instructor will provide a set of data, and will guide participants in the process of identifying relevant categories, coding the responses, and interpreting the results.

Advanced Dashboards Using Excel (✱Laptop required/Excel 2007 and higher required)............... $85

Craig Abbey, University at Buffalo


In this workshop, students will learn how to create dashboards in Excel 2007/2010 that dynamically update as new data are added, create interactive charts and incorporate traffic light performance indicators!

Prerequisite: Participants should have some working knowledge of Excel 2007/2010 and its functions.



Preparing for Accreditation: Understanding the Accreditation Demands and Perspectives, Especially the Need for Data on Assessment........................... $85

Rebecca Brodigan, Bowdoin College;

Karen Froslid Jones, American University


Two experienced NEASC and Middle States evaluators will provide an overview of the accreditation process and will focus on the 5th year report and Self-Study reports, respectively. This workshop is not for technical or career college practitioners.

SPSS Basic Tips & Tricks for IR (✱Laptop loaded with SPSS 19 required)................ $85

Mark Palladino, Philadelphia University

This workshop will introduce users to some of the basic features in SPSS that can be helpful for Institutional Researchers. We’ll cover using SPSS Syntax for automating tasks including opening datasets, inspecting and recoding data and performing analysis. Participants will also learn how to use the Custom Tables module for summarizing complex datasets. Attendees will explore other features like the Define Multiple Response Sets, Merge Files, and Identify Duplicate Cases features in SPSS all of which can be helpful in getting the most out of SPSS.

Colloquium for experienced IR practitioners: True confessions in IR................ No Charge

Mitchell Nesler, Empire State College

Maren Hess, Saint Vincent College

Michael Dooris, Pennsylvania State University

Please join us for a session in which seasoned IR professionals will share their war stories from the past year, offer support and advice after hearing yours, and provide the camaraderie which gives NEAIR its "NEAIRiness.” "Seasoned” is a qualitative term – use your best judgment. No registration is required for this workshop.



Sunday, December 4th

9:00 – 5:00 PM

IPEDS Data and Benchmarking: Supporting Decision Making and Institutional Effectiveness (I & II)..........................NO CHARGE - APPLICATION REQUIRED LINK FORTHCOMING

(✱Laptop required/wireless capability)

Braden Hosch, Connecticut Department of Higher Education;

Jennifer Dunseath, Rhode Island School of Design


Those wishing to participate in this AIR/NCES funded workshop (no registration fee, and up to $500 in travel/lodging funds available) must apply through the AIR/NCES application site. This workshop is limited to 40 participants. The online registration process is now open and closes on October 20, 2011. Completion of the Workshop registration request process does not guarantee a confirmed Workshop seat. If there are more registration requests than there are spaces available, priority will be given to individuals who are currently IPEDS Keyholders or State/System Coordinators and did not attend the AIR/NEAIR IPEDS Workshop last year (workshop content is the same as last year).



  • Workshops seats are available on a first come, first serve basis. Seating is limited.
  • Please register for workshops early to assist us in our planning.
  • Questions about the workshop content and software requirements will be directed to the presenter(s).
  • Participants must bring their own laptop computers if the presenter has indicated that a computer is required.
  • Conference organizers reserve the right to cancel any workshop due to low enrollment.
  • Two-part workshops (and fees) include a Part I and Part II.

✱ denotes a New/Cutting Edge Tech Skill workshop.

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