The Graduate Outcomes questionnaire design utilises a substantial proportion of established questions from DLHE and LDLHE, with some revision, where appropriate.
Several additional questions have also been included following feedback from the sector, gathered through consultations. This includes enhanced questions on self-employed graduates, graduate reflections on their activity, and subjective wellbeing questions (see part one of this methodology statement for details).
In order to reduce measurement error (specifically respondent and interviewer error), the survey underwent cognitive testing with a sample of graduates who conformed to the criteria required for the actual survey (graduates who completed their course 15 months ago, across a range of provider types). It was also subject to numerous rounds of user acceptance testing by internal and external colleagues. The questionnaire was finalised in 2018 in consultation with funding and regulatory bodies. View the cognitive testing technical report and outcomes report.
The survey questionnaire hads remained largely consistent between the first three years with some minor changes to question wording. However, at the start of the year 4 collection year, a number of questionnaire changes were implemented following consultation with various sector representatives. This was part of a wider Survey Review project. The changes resulted in a noticeable reduction in survey length and streamlining of various questions. Further details on these changes and other aspects of the Survey Review were summarised for data users and are available at Graduate Outcomes survey review – our approach to continuous improvement.
The survey results coding manual, which contains necessary information and guidance on the data that is returned from the survey, is available to users.