The AIR Professional File
Summer 2017, Article 143 

Constructing a Peer Institution: A New Peer Methodology

Steve Chatman


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Whatever your method of selecting institutions for comparison and benchmarking, you can both increase the validity and accuracy of those comparisons and extend the value of comparisons to department and college levels by constructing a peer institution from disaggregated components. This paper will demonstrate the methodology using the National Study of Instructional Costs and Productivity (Delaware Cost Study), the Faculty Salary Survey by Discipline (Oklahoma State University [OSU]), and Academic Analytics, LLC, to construct better peer institutions with comparative statistics at campus, college, and department levels for faculty salaries, instructional costs, and research activity. The methodology can also be used to fine-tune traditional peer methodologies and should be added to the institutional research arsenal of cluster-, threshold-, hybrid-, and panel-based peers.

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Steve Chatman, University of California, Merced


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