University of Delaware

Survey says

Blue Hen Poll examines student opinion on various issues


11:04 a.m., May 4, 2012--Most undergraduates are satisfied with UD and would recommend the University to a friend or colleague, a trend that has continued to increase over the last four years, according to the results of the fifth annual Blue Hen Poll

The 2012 poll, which is conducted “by students, for students,” surveyed a random sample of 5,000 undergraduates on topics ranging from diversity, to political engagement, to a host of other issues. The findings were formally released Thursday, May 3, and can be viewed online. 

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Among the key findings: 

  • Academic reputation is the most influential factor in students’ decision to attend UD;
  • Most students (68 percent) favor a smoke-free campus, with 78 percent of women supporting such a move (compared to 55 percent of men);
  • Majority of students are interested in politics; 82 percent plan to vote in 2012 presidential elections;
  • Students favor Obama in the presidential election (61 percent), followed by 13 percent who remained unsure, 10 percent who favor Romney and 9 percent in favor of Ron Paul; 
  • Three out of four students would not know where to go if they experienced an act of discrimination or prejudice. This remained true across races, but different across gender, with women more likely to know which resources to seek; and 
  • Students feel UD provides a welcoming and safe campus for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. 

The survey also examined alumni connections and found students were likely to keep UD updated on their contact information, and future graduates were more willing to donate money than time.

While many questions on the survey have been asked in previous years, some categories were specific to current campus issues. 

Student opinion on the "Wings of Thought" statue was one such example. 

Nearly half of all students sampled were unfamiliar with statue, and of those familiar with it, freshmen, sophomores and juniors were more likely to favor or remain unsure about the statue, while seniors were more likely to oppose it.

The pollsters cross-tabulated the results against overall student satisfaction and found students dissatisfied with UD were more likely to oppose the statue (73 percent to 46 percent).

A comprehensive PowerPoint of the findings can be found online. 

About the Blue Hen Poll

The Blue Hen Poll (BHP) is a public opinion survey designed to examine the attitudes and opinions of students at the University of Delaware. The BHP is planned, marketed and presented by UD students with faculty supervision. The goals of the project are to inform the UD community (including on-campus, Newark, and surrounding areas of Newark) about what UD students think, how they feel, and what they do; to provide an outlet for students to have their opinions heard; and to provide a social research opportunity for undergraduate students to learn about survey methodology and quantitative analysis.

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