Although yesterday saw the launch of the Design Salary Guide, we were also interested to hear that Pratt's student-designed, -managed and -organized magazine the "Prattler" recently did a survey on the student body. The data covers a range of categories, from Cumulative Debt by Graduation to Sexuality and Who's Voting.
Pratt's student run magazine illustrates data, through, well illustrations
Many third party sites offer statistical data about colleges, such as rate of acceptance or more importantly male to female ratio. This information, however, is a current representation of the views and opinions of students, putting a face to the data point.
The execution of statisitcal data, which can be relatively uninspired, is presented in a refreshing and clear manner in this month's "Prattler." For example, the dominating theme of dollar bills is used to illustrate the various ways that students spend their money.
The data presents and affirms many of the stereotypes and clichés that come with an art school student body. As intriguing as this data is, it is not as statistically sound as it could be. Even from my shaky recollection of my AP Statistics class, this survey is slightly skewed: as mentioned in the article, of the 900 student questionnaires sent out, 150 responded, a dubious representation of roughly 4,000 students.
If a larger and more accurate sample were achieved, the data could be beneficial in many regards. The data could give prospective students an honest portrayal of life at Pratt. Likewise, current students would benefit from a better understanding of their peers and themselves.
Moreover, if more data could be collected from the student body, the roles of administration would be slightly alleviated. A survey would allow more of a dialogue to occur between students and school officials. I believe this is a great example of a design school utilizing its resources—its creative students—to present information in a clear, aesthetically pleasing manner.