Data collection for the
took place from April through September 2010. Four surveys were sent to each school:
1) Campus Survey categories:
Administration, Climate Change & Energy, Green Building, Student Involvement, and Transportation
2) Dining Services Survey category:
Food & Recycling
3) Endowment Survey categories:
Endowment Transparency, Investment Priorities, and Shareholder Engagement
4) Student Survey category:
The response rate to the Campus Survey was over 87 percent, whereas 89 percent completed the Dining Services Survey, 80 percent responded to the Endowment Survey and 81 percent to the Student Survey. In all, more than 96 percent of schools participated in at least one of the four surveys, while just 14 schools (4 percent) declined participation in all four surveys.
All 52 indicators used for grading are described in the
section. Each school earned numerical points in proportion to its policies and practices for the indicators in each category. Grading was based on the following criteria: By meriting at least 70 percent of credit for each category, a school earned an "A," 50 percent to earn a "B," 30 percent to earn a "C," and 10 percent to earn a "D." To simplify grading, only full letter grades, A, B, C, D, and F (with no plus or minus) were used for the six campus management categories and the three endowment-related categories. The nine equally weighted category grades were totaled to calculate a grade point average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale. The GPA was then translated into an overall sustainability grade, ranging from “A” to “F,” using a standard grading scale. Please see the
section for further information.