This page serves as a resource for questions about the optional grouping variable in the CUTE population file. If you have additional questions at any time, please contact the CUTE Project Services Team.
CUTE Population File: Group Variable FAQ
Yes, you may include a single group variable in your population file. However, there is one case in which your group variable data will not be returned to you: if it can be used to identify individual instructional staff (faculty, instructors, etc.) responses. To ensure instructional staff anonymity, the grouping variable is reviewed at the time of submission to determine if a sizable proportion of instructional staff respondents are represented in each category. If your grouping variable does not protect instructional staff anonymity, the CUTE Project Services Team will contact you to discuss options for returning your grouping variable.
Because faculty identities must remain confidential to their institutions, any personally identifying information cannot be contained in a grouping variable (name, ID number, etc.).
The decision regarding what group to include is left to the institution and should be used to conduct analyses specific to the institution. The following are examples of grouping variables that may work well:
- Participation in professional development opportunities
- Attendance at events offered by the campus teaching and learning center
- Campus on which an instructional staff member teaches (for multi-campus institutions)
- Participation in special teaching and learning programs or instructional staff learning communities
A group variable allows institutions to conduct analyses specific to their institution. For example, some schools have opted to use their group variable to disaggregate instructional staff responses from multiple campuses. Institutions that submit a group variable should pick one that will help them produce results valuable to the institution but will not identify individual faculty.