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Office of Institutional Research

Office of Institutional Research

The Office of Institutional Research (OIR) at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) conducts research studies and publishes reports that help faculty, administrators, policymakers, and community leaders advance students’ access to and success within and beyond the College. OIR produces NOVA’s annual Fact Book, which presents data (both College-wide and by campus) on the College’s student enrollment, graduates and transfers, finances and facilities, personnel, student services, community education, and international students. Additionally, OIR leads NOVA’s new data coaching model, Data Close to Practice, that improves access to data while empowering frontline faculty and staff to utilize data to make improvements in support of equity and student success.

Areas of Focus

Data/Data Analysis

OIR is the official resource for key NOVA institutional data. The Office is responsible for federal and state reporting requirements. OIR ensures data integrity at the College; the Office also provides data to and conducts data analysis for the College’s president, the College Board, senior administrators, committees, and external constituents. OIR publishes institutional information about NOVA regularly on this website.

OIR’s data dashboards track the College’s progress on each of its Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), which are an important component of the most recent strategic plan (2017-2023). Each dashboard provides several years of data on a given KPI, which highlights where NOVA is excelling as well as where the College has improved over time. The data dashboards are one way in which NOVA disseminates student achievement data to senior leadership and key frontline staff.

Research Studies

OIR conducts research studies and publishes its findings in research reports and briefs, data dashboards, and fact sheets. Studies cover a wide range of subjects that focus on students’ access to and success at NOVA. OIR also conducts environmental analyses, such as studies of regional demographic changes, labor market trends, and local business and economic development needs. Additionally, OIR conducts special studies at the request of both the College president and the Administrative Council. Special studies include changing community college enrollment patterns, evaluations of services at NOVA, and needs assessments that support policy decisions.

Research Support

OIR provides research support to faculty, staff, and students. OIR researchers develop survey instruments and use quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research to analyze and evaluate data. The Office also provides consultative support to NOVA-affiliated faculty, staff, and other stakeholders who are writing grant proposals, conducting statistical analyses, tracking student performance, and completing doctoral research studies. Additionally, OIR takes a leadership role in supporting major College and nationwide programs including Achieving the Dream (ATD), the Gallup Well-Being Index, and the Opportunity Insights CLIMB Initiative.

Enrollment Planning

OIR maintains NOVA’s official enrollment data, monitors enrollment trends at the College, and provides enrollment targets to NOVA’s campuses for planning purposes. NOVA also monitors national enrollment trends at community colleges across four-year institutions.