UT Martin students feel connected, confident, safe, according to Gallup Inc. survey
Contact 1: Erin Chesnut
MARTIN, Tenn. – According to a survey of almost 1,000 students enrolled at the University of Tennessee at Martin during the spring 2018 semester, students feel connected to and encouraged by their professors; are confident in the skills they learn in the classroom; and feel safe in the campus community.
These results were reported in the third and final phase of a two-year research project conducted by Gallup Inc. to determine how academic and social experiences at UT Martin impact both current students and alumni. The phase-three survey gathered responses from 909 students who were enrolled during the spring 2018 semester.
While UT Martin scored higher than the national average in a number of areas, the results reinforce the continuing message that UT Martin faculty and staff care about the long-term accomplishments of their students and want to help them succeed however possible.
Survey respondents show that UT Martin students are more likely than their national counterparts to seek the help and advice of faculty mentors. Sixty-seven percent of respondents say they meet with faculty members two or more times per year (compared to 59 percent nationally), and 61 percent of respondents say they talk to faculty and staff members about their career options often (compared to 45 percent nationally).
UT Martin faculty also make an effort to assist students with their career choices, and 79 percent of respondents say they have had a faculty-initiated conversation about their careers during their time at UT Martin. Only 63 percent of national respondents could say the same thing. Students also report having faculty mentors who encourage them, feeling important to their professors on a personal level, and having at least one faculty member who makes them excited about learning.
Eighty-eight percent of survey participants either agree or strongly agree that UT Martin is committed to academic excellence, and the same percentage feels academically challenged by
their major coursework. Finally, 82 percent of respondents have someone at UT Martin they can count on to help plan their course to graduation, and 89 percent know where to go with questions about degree requirements.
UT Martin also surpassed national averages in areas where students were asked about the value, quality and relevance of their education both inside and outside of the classroom. Fifty-seven percent of respondents strongly agree they will graduate with the knowledge and skills needed to be successful in the workplace, while only 36 percent of students nationally felt the same.
UT Martin’s results show almost double the number of positive responses to questions regarding whether the education received at UT Martin is worth the cost, as compared to the national average. In fact, 60 percent of survey respondents say they would still enroll at UT Martin if they could make the decision over again.
Finally, UT Martin students report feeling safe on campus (60 percent) and comfortable sharing unpopular ideas in class (33 percent). The national averages for the same questions are 39 and 22 percent, respectively. The survey also indicates that 54 percent of respondents feel that UT Martin would do the right thing if a student reported a sexual assault, as compared to only 36 percent of students nationally who are confident in their institutions.
Phase one of this project exclusively surveyed university alumni to discover how their UT Martin experiences impacted their lives after graduation. The results from 2,623 responses showed intense alumni pride and attachment to their alma mater. Phase two dealt with qualitative responses from 20 phone interviews with alumni who graduated between 2011 and 2016 and also yielded positive results.
For more information on this survey, or to see full demographic information for the response pools from this or any previous phase, contact the UT Martin Office of the Chancellor at 731-881-7500.
PHOTO ID: (utm.edu image, left to right) Abby Buck, Union City; Gabrielle Tennyson, Clarksville; Campbell Spencer, New Johnsonville; Mary Pate, Brighton; and Trajan Ingram, Jackson.