Data Science, University News

Spring 2015 Poll 2 Results and Methodology

Monday, March 30, 2015
This article is part of the series Spring 2015 Student Polls

Emma Jerzyk and Gadi Cohen

See accompanying article. Please click the image to access the poll chord diagram.

1. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Christina Paxson is handling her job as president of the University?

3.3% Strongly approve

30.2% Somewhat approve

30.2% No opinion

28.7% Somewhat disapprove

7.6% Strongly disapprove

2. Do you approve of the University’s decision, due to a lack of conclusive physical evidence, to cancel a hearing for the Phi Kappa Psi student accused of serving a drink spiked with GHB at an October party?

3.5% Strongly approve

10.1% Somewhat approve

8.1% No opinion

25.2% Somewhat disapprove

46.5% Strongly disapprove

6.7% Not familiar enough to answer

3. Do you approve of a Student Conduct Board’s reasoning behind finding the individual accused of sexually assaulting one of the two women allegedly drugged that same night not responsible?

3.4% Strongly approve

6.4% Somewhat approve

8.9% No opinion

18.2% Somewhat disapprove

43.0% Strongly disapprove

20.1% Not familiar enough to answer


The data reported come from 972 written questionnaires administered to undergraduates March 16-17 in the lobby of J. Walter Wilson, the Stephen Robert ’62 Campus Center and the Sciences Library. The poll has a 2.9 percent margin of error with 95 percent confidence. The margin of error is 4.3 percent for the subset of males, 4.0 percent for females, 5.9 percent for first-years, 5.2 percent for sophomores, 6.2 percent for juniors, 6.0 percent for seniors, 4.1 percent for students receiving financial aid and 4.1 percent for students not receiving financial aid.

The sample polled was demographically similar to the University’s undergraduate population as a whole. The sample was 46 percent male and 52 percent female. First-years made up 25 percent of the sample, 30 percent were sophomores, 22 percent were juniors and 24 percent were seniors. Varsity athletes made up 13 percent of the sample. Students involved in Greek life made up 18 percent of the sample. Of those polled, 50 percent currently receive financial aid from Brown. Students reported all races with which they identify, with 59 percent saying white, 26 percent Asian, 13 percent Hispanic, 11 percent black, 1.0 percent American Indian or Alaska Native, 0.7 percent Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander and 3.4 percent other.

Statistical significance was established at the 0.05 level. All reported cross-tabulations are statistically significant.

University News Editors Emma Harris ’17, Caroline Kelly ’17 and Joseph Zappa ’17, Graphics Editor and Metro Editor Emma Jerzyk ’17, Sports Editor Andrew Flax ’17, Senior Staff Writers Taneil Ruffin ’17 and Kate Talerico ’18 and Graphics staffer Gadi Cohen ’15 coordinated the poll. Herald section editors, senior staff writers and other staff members conducted the poll.

Over the next several weeks, The Herald will publish a series of articles about individual poll questions. Find results of previous polls at



  1. Greek Alum says:

    It’s absolutely frightening that the student body is more dissatisfied with the dropping of the hearing for the alleged drugging than that the rapist* was found not guilty.

    • The “20.1% Not familiar enough to answer” suggests that a good chunk of students are apparently not familiar with the individual actually accused of doing the assaulting. I’d imagine there are plenty who still think they are one and the same.

      Holding strong views without being informed ._.

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