Institutional Efforts Documenting Student Success

Mission, Vision, and Metrics

Mission, Vision, and Metrics

To measure and explain achievement in transforming students, the University Student Success Committee conducted an inventory of tools, instruments, and surveys used at LLU that systematically demonstrate institutional capacity for achieving mission, vision, and values.
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Graduation and Retention

Graduation and Retention

The success of Loma Linda University's vision of "Transforming lives through education, health care, and research" resonated when graduates from LLU ranked number one in a national survey on "How much satisfaction do you get from your job, and do you feel your job helps make the world a better place?"
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Table 1 Comparison of Basic Terms

Table 2 Comparison of Traditional Student Success Indicators

Definitions of Programs and Related Terms Used at LLU

Guideline for Academic Definitions

Loma Linda University

PDF File

Program and Related Terms1


Definition Components

Academic Content

Degree Program

Degree programs regularly have special/unique:




50% difference in curriculum/courses between degree programs Impact on transcript:

       Degree noted on transcript


Impact on diploma:

       Degree noted on diploma


Curriculum/content must have at least 20% difference in curriculum/courses between other programs in these areas:

       Courses, practicum, and/or research


Must have enough qualified faculty (according to professional accreditation standards) to teach/guide a concentration

Must have appropriate clinical practice sites, if applicable Impact on transcript:

       Concentration may be noted on transcript depending on program’s needs


Impact on diploma:

       Concentration may be noted on diploma depending on program’s needs


Adds to the concentration


Impact on transcript:

       Specialization not noted on transcript


Impact on diploma:

       Specialization not noted on diploma


1 Any deviation, driven by professional accrediting practice, must be approved by the Provost.



Definition Components

Academic Content


Only undergraduate levels


Impact on transcript:

       Major noted on transcript


Impact on diploma:

       Major noted on diploma


Only undergraduate levels


Impact on transcript:

       Minor noted on transcript


Impact on diploma:

       Minor noted on diploma

Delivery Methodologies


Schedule options for taking a degree program


Impact on transcript:

       Track not noted on transcript

Impact on diploma:

       Track not noted on diploma


Modalities for program delivery:

       On main campus - 50% or more

       Online - 50% or more

       Off-campus3 - 50% or more - domestic and international

Impact on transcript:

       Modality not noted on transcript


Impact on diploma:

       Modality not noted on diploma


2 Whenever an existing program adds a new modality, a full proposal must be approved through the established processes in coordination with the Provost’s Office.

3 Ibid.


FAQs about Students Success Reports at LLU
Student Success Committee

PDF File Version

1. What does Loma Linda University report on and display student success data?

Loma Linda University reports student success data to meet federal and accrediting agency requirements. LLU also reports student success data to allow stakeholders and prospective students to make informed decisions on what they can expect at LLU.

Additionally, LLU’s reporting and displaying of student success data aids program review and supports development of best practices.

2.     What types of student success data are used to demonstrate success in LLU programs?

    Retention Rate

    On-time Graduation Rate (OGR)

    Absolute Graduation Rate (AGR)


    WSCUC Graduation Rate Dashboard ( graduation-rate-dashboard#t420n1220)

    Board pass rates

    Gainful Employment following program completion

3.     How are student success reports generated?

The Office of Institutional Research develops the reporting templates and the reports are generated from data stored in the University’s data warehouse.

4.     How often is the student success data updated?

The data is updated daily.

5.     What types of reports are available to each school?

Each school’s data specialist can determine the number and type of different reports and visualizations. Examples of reports are available at or by contacting the Office of Educational Effectiveness.

6.     How does one obtain student success reports?

Please contact your school’s designated data specialist. If they are not able to provide the report, please contact the Office of Educational Effectiveness.

7.     If there are discrepancies in the data displayed in a report, who should be contacted?

The first contact person is the school’s designated data specialist. The data specialist has the responsibility of reviewing reports and working with the Office of Educational Effectiveness (OEE) to reconcile reports. If the data specialist is not able to assist, please contact the OEE.

8.     How are small cohorts reported?

If a school is disaggregating data for internal use and a small n exists, a “Small n” can be reported in place of actual calculations for the cohort. Please note however that the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) requires reporting of data regardless of cohort size (


9.     To whom does the student success data generated by programs or schools belong?

The University owns all student success data regardless of where it is generated.

10.  When is LLU required to report and/or publish new data about student success?

The reporting period for updating student success data at WSCUC is May of each year. The reporting deadline for student success data to IPEDS is February 15.

11.  What are the differences in definitions of On-time Graduation Rate, Absolute Graduation Rate, and Unit Redemption Rate?

The On-time Graduation Rate is the percentage of a cohort’s students completing their degree within 150% of the normal time to completion’, as stated in the institutional catalog. The rate is based on an entering cohort, inclusive of the period from 7/1 6/30.

The Absolute Graduation Rate (AGR) is used by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) as a measure of student success. This calculation is given by the formula below, where U is the number of units granted by the institution during the year, R is the number of units redeemed by graduates during the year, and d is the ratio of the average dropout’s total completed units to the average graduate’s total completed units (the “unit count ratio”):

Absolute Graduation Rate = R/R + ((U – R)/ d)

The Unit Redemption Rate does not directly measure the proportion of students who graduate in a given length of time, but rather the proportion of instructional units granted that are ultimately counted toward the successful conferral of a degree.

12. Where can I find the definitions of student success that are used on campus?

Definitions can be found on the loma Linda University's student success webpage at 

13.  Can we use our own database at the school or department?

Historically, schools on campus have used various means to accomplish the tracking of data for strategic planning and reporting purposes. LLU Administration and Information Systems have worked toward improving data integrity and streamlining business processes across the campus. Several core software systems have been implemented to enhance the ability of schools to appropriately access data and maintain consistency in reports. Schools are encouraged to utilize these core systems. A best practice would be to utilize the core systems to validate local data integrity and consistency then retire the individual databases once data has been validated.

14. Do we have a protocol on generating reports?

The current protocol specifies that the school’s designated data specialist is the provider for individual school reports. This individual, working with the school’s Dean, fulfills each request. For University-wide data, the Office of Educational Effectiveness generates the report.

15.  What are the contextual student success indicators used on campus?

The contextual success indicators include faculty-student contact, co-curricular activities, peer interactions, service activities, and/or spiritual support. Campus leaders continue to explore other types of student success indicators that can be used to describe the impact on the Loma Linda University campus.


Last updated May 2016