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FAQ about the Delaware Study

What is the Delaware Study?

The National Study of Instructional Costs and Productivity (commonly referred to as the Delaware Study) was developed in 1992 by the Office of Institutional Research and Planning at the University of Delaware. Since its inception, nearly 600 institutions have participated in the study. It is regarded “as the “tool of choice” for comparative analysis of faculty teaching loads, direct instructional cost, and separately budgeted scholarly activity.” (see

How long has Boise State been participating?

Boise State has participated in the Delaware Study four times, 2009, 2012, 2013, and 2014 and is in the process of submitting the 2015 Delaware Study data.

The 2015 submission is based on data from Fall 2013 and Fiscal Year 2013-14.

How has Boise State used the data in the past?

Generally speaking, we have examined the data on a macro-level to see how our costs compare to institutions similar to ours. Data have been shared with the Provost and Deans for their use.

What are the data sources used to generate the Boise State submission to the Delaware Study?

Data sources include: General Ledger, Budget, Class Schedule and Faculty Assignment, Class Registrations, and Graduates/Completions. Data submitted for the Delaware Study cover the last completed fiscal year and the fall semester of that fiscal period (e.g., 2015 Delaware submission is comprised of data from FY14 and fall 2013).

What is the basic method for assembling Delaware Study data?

The core organizing principle of the Delaware Study is to “follow the money” and match all data sources based on the origin of the instructor and how they are paid. This is accomplished through the following: (1) departments are derived through a matching process between the Department(s) of the Subject(s) being taught and the Department(s) from which the teaching faculty are paid; (2) a CIP Code is assigned to each such department. These derived Departments (CIP Codes) are then used to tag all data attributed to that Department; and (3) cost data are attributed using the same correspondence to tie General Ledger accounts to CIP Codes.

For a detailed schematic of the sources and procedures used, click here.

How are CIP codes determined?

By and large, the CIP codes conform to those that were determined when programs were established and/or are the codes on file with the Board Office and reflect those used in PeopleSoft. However, in a few cases, the CIP code on file for the department/program is not the one best matched with the program’s current offerings as determined by the Vice Provost for Academic Planning in consultation with the department chair. In those instances, the CIP code is adjusted accordingly to ensure the CIP code used is the one most appropriate for peer comparisons.

For a complete listing of the departments and CIP codes that are used, click here.

What are the faculty definitions that are used by the Delaware Study?

Delaware Study defines three types of faculty: regular, supplemental, and teaching assistants. Regular faculty are those for whom there is a “recurring contractual relationship where the individual and institution both assume a continuing appointment.” Supplemental faculty are defined as “non-recurring” or one using “temporary funds or a temporary position” (e.g., adjuncts), and teaching assistants are graduate student instructors.

Does my department receive credit for team teaching, faculty teaching honors, foundational studies, and interdisciplinary teaching?

Yes. All instructors that are credited to a particular department are credited to the same CIP code regardless of the course they are teaching.

Is non-credit activity attributed to workload?

Yes, remedial coursework, audits, labs, etc. are attributed as if the student were earning credit in order to accurately capture the information. For example, a course with an attached laboratory has both components counted as credit bearing by assigning the lab one credit from the total credits assigned to the course and the remainder assigned to the lecture. Remedial coursework is counted based on what the student paid for, not the amount of credit earned.

Are all types of department funds counted?

Yes, the data captured from the General Ledger reflect all expenditures, which include appropriated, local, grant, A260, etc.

Are self-support programs and $$ accounted for?

Yes, self-support funds have been matched to the appropriate departments based on a cross-walk received from Extended Studies.

How are the grants received by Centers accounted for?

Expenditures for Centers have been mapped to the appropriate department and college using the same method employed in the Budget and Planning data from the Vice Provost for Academic Planning.

How are instructional grants counted?

Grants that are received and tagged in the instructional expense category were counted as public service in order to not inflate the direct instructional cost of the department.

To whom will our department/program be compared?

Results of the Delaware Study are provided by CIP code, therefore, academic programs are compared to like programs rather than to programs unlike themselves.

Who are the peer institutions used for comparison?

The peers are drawn from institutions with the same Carnegie classification (basic), which in Boise State’s case is Master’s-Large. For departments that offer a doctoral program, the peer group of Research High is used. All institutions with these same classifications who participated in the same years as Boise State, therefore, would be included in the comparison peers. See for additional details.

What types of calculations are completed with our data?

Delaware Study provides results by each CIP code for three sets of National Benchmarks presented by: Carnegie Classification, highest degree awarded in the discipline, and undergraduate/graduate program mix in the discipline. For more information about the results ratios, see