OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY
above are low, an institution should consider administering the survey in another manner to obtain higher response rates.
OCR does not consider non-responses to surveys as evidence of lack of interest or ability in athletics. As discussed above, regardless of whether students respond to a survey, OCR also evaluates whether students’ interest and abilities are assessed using the multiple indicators described above.
- Confidentiality Protections
OCR also looks at whether institutions notify students that all responses as well as any personally identifiable information they provide will be kept confidential, although the aggregate survey information will be shared with athletic directors, coaches, and other staff, as appropriate. When requesting any personal or personally identifiable data, protecting the respondents’ confidentiality helps to ensure that institutions obtain high-quality data and high response rates. If a student has expressed interest in being contacted when responding to the survey, an institution should continue to maintain the student’s confidentiality except to the extent needed to follow-up with the student.
- Frequency of Conducting the Survey
As discussed above, OCR evaluates whether an institution periodically conducts an assessment of interest and abilities. In addition to the factors OCR considers when determining the rate of frequency for conducting an assessment, OCR also will consider factors such as the size of the previously assessed survey population and the rate of response to the immediately preceding survey(s) conducted by the institution, if any.
- Multiple Indicators Evaluated to Assess Sufficient Number of Interested and Able Students to Sustain a Team
Under Part Three, institutions are not required to create an intercollegiate team or elevate a club team to intercollegiate status unless there are a sufficient number of interested and able students to sustain a team. When OCR evaluates whether there are a sufficient number of students, OCR considers such indicators as the:
- minimum number of participants needed for a particular sport;
- opinions of athletic directors and coaches concerning the abilities required to field an intercollegiate team; and
- size of a team in a particular sport at institutions in the governing athletic association or conference to which the institution belongs or in the institution’s competitive regions.
When evaluating the minimum number of athletes needed, OCR may consider factors such as the: