• First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols

    The NACE First-Destination Surveys Task Force developed standards and protocols for colleges and universities to use in collecting and reporting graduating student career outcomes data. Developed by practitioners for practitioners, the standards and protocols also reflect feedback provided during the public comment period by more than 100 career services professionals. Resources, including the standards and protocols, articles about how some schools are implementing the standards, and PPTs and handouts from webinars about the first-destination survey effort are available here.

    First-Destination Standards and Protocols: Key Questions and Answers

    Here are frequently asked questions and answers to the first-destination standards and protocols.

    First-Destination Standards and Protocols Allow University to Streamline its Survey, Process

    Implementation of NACE’s First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols at Hofstra University has allowed the career services office to align their survey to national standards and restructure it.

    Collecting Graduating Student Outcomes: First-Destination Survey Initiative for the Class of 2014

    For the first time, NACE-member colleges and universities have the opportunity to collect and report graduate outcomes data using the same definitions, time frames, and parameters. More than 250 institutions have indicated they plan to collect and report outcomes data for Class of 2014 graduates using the NACE First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols, and others are expected to take part. The aggregated data will provide for trends analysis.

    Early Adopter Touts Positives of First-Destination Survey for Liberal Arts Colleges

    Catherine Neiner appreciates the simplicity and the standardized nature of NACE’s First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols. The NACE First-Destination Survey levels the playing field for liberal arts. We’re getting the same general data across the board. We can now make the case that our students are going out into the world and being productive. I am hoping that this will be an important component of advancing the liberal arts.”

    Measuring SLOs: Comprehending the World of Work

    Helping students comprehend the world of work is critically important; this endeavor helps students express their career interests and develop accurate and realistic career expectations; and helps with their academic plans, retention, degree attainment, and their successful entry into their world of work.

    First-Destination Success Built on Partnerships, Relationships

    Early adopters have found benefits to implementing the NACE First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols beyond accruing valuable data.

    Measuring SLOs: Expressing Values Clearly

    Career services practitioners know that when a candidate uses his or her personal and work values when applying for career opportunities, the likelihood of a congruent match between candidate and opportunity is significantly higher, increasing the authenticity of the application.

    Communication a Key When Implementing First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols

    Renee Starek has followed several key steps to achieve a 94 percent knowledge rate thus far for the Class of 2014, just months after the First-Destination Survey Standards and Protocols were implemented at Seton Hill.

    Measuring SLOs: Strategic Cover Letters

    The strategically developed cover letter deliberately draws from the job description and the student’s KSAs (knowledge, skills, and abilities), providing a “rubric” for the cover letter writer. This format has the typical initial and concluding sections of the letter—it is the middle section that makes it strategic.

    Measuring SLOs: The Importance of Scaling

    The scale(s) used for an SLO project will directly influence how data is reported; this is why it is important to get it dialed in. The scale essentially standardizes into units multiple levels of the construct being measured. Careful scale construction allows you to make important interpretations from the data. Poorly designed scales can jeopardize your efforts.

    Measuring SLOs: Connecting Out-of-Classroom Learning With Classroom Learning

    Help students measure and articulate their transferrable skills and abilities for internships and job interviews.

    Bentley University Initiative Engages Stakeholders to Tackle Work Force Preparedness

    Bentley University is spearheading a research-based, dialogue-driven initiative known as the PreparedU Project that is sparking a national discourse among key stakeholders to define work force preparedness and determine how these groups can successfully prepare college graduates for today’s work force.

    Recruiting Benchmarks: Offers and Acceptances

    Employers extended offers to an average 74 percent of students interviewed, according to results of NACE’s 2013 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey. Meanwhile, students who received offers accepted them at a rate of 38.3 percent.

    NACE Advocacy Mashup: Introducing First-Destination Standards

    Given the growing institutional and governmental demands for greater accountability and more effective outcomes assessments, NACE members have been asking the association to provide greater leadership and guidance establishing and promulgating standards and guidelines to assist career services organizations in undertaking and advancing their work in this area.

    CLA+: The Future of College Hiring, or a Lesson in Redundancy?

    The Collegiate Learning Assessment Plus (CLA+) is an assessment test used in the hiring of college graduates. Standardized tests (assessments of competency) are better indicators of an individual’s content knowledge and capacity to process information than the individual’s record of achievement in the classroom. Nearly 200 American universities poised to administer the test to their graduating seniors next spring, there is some indication that even the higher education community is seeking a better way to measure learning outcomes than the traditional reliance on completed course work.

    Marketing the Career Center: Analytics

    Connect your marketing analytics to your broader assessment plans and learning outcomes. Use your social media platforms to provide beneficial data.

    Career Services Benchmarks: 70 Percent of Schools Conduct First-Destination Surveys

    Seventy percent of the 917 NACE member schools responding to the 2012-13 Career Services Benchmark Survey reported conducting a first-destination survey at graduation.

    Tips and Resources for Conducting Effective Graduate Surveys


    Graduate surveys can yield key information about the value of career services to your students in their job searches. This data can provide excellent insight to use for strategic planning and developing action steps. Here are several planning steps to take.


    How to Assess Your Career Center


    Assessment programs for internal use remain beneficial to career centers because they allow them to improve the quality of their services and demonstrate whether or not their mission is being achieved. Here are tips for assessing your career center program.


    Developing the Career Services Story: An Overview of Assessment Strategy

    In the second of two-part series of articles on accountability and assessment in career services, Sam Ratcliffe offers insight into how to address key stakeholder questions on the quality of career services’ programs and services, and the related impact on student learning.

    Demonstrating Career Services Success: Rethinking How We Tell the Story

    In the first of a two-part look at how career services offices can demonstrate their value, Sam Ratcliffe looks at accountability from institutional and career services' viewpoints.