About the OPIR
The Office of Planning and Institutional Research (OPIR) has three primary missions.
First, OPIR provides the Provost and other senior administrators with planning information that is used in managing the university and in making decisions about its policies and goals. Planning information includes historical and current information about Columbia, comparisons across peer institutions, and data from surveys of faculty, staff, students and alumni. In addition to gathering and organizing relevant facts and figures, OPIR uses these data to carry out research and analyses regarding issues of importance to the university.
Second, OPIR is responsible for broadening the general knowledge and understanding of the university and its activities. The office maintains the university's on-line Statistical Abstract as well as a brief Columbia fact sheet. OPIR coordinates university reporting to governmental agencies and provides data to publishers of college guides. The office represents the university in several organizations of selected colleges and universities for the purpose of exchanging information.
Third, OPIR has recently taken on the responsibility for coordinating and managing the University's efforts to assess learning outcomes for our students. We are working to gather learning outcomes plans from every degree-granting program at the University, develop an institution-wide structure within which this kind of assessment will take occur, and establish a survey research function within the office.
To these ends, OPIR works cooperatively with units within the Provost's Office as well as a wide range of other university offices in the Arts & Sciences, Columbia College, SEAS' Office of the Dean, the University Senate, various offices under the Executive Vice President for Administration, as well as individual schools' administrative offices.