Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Measuring our progress

As WSU embarks on the Drive to 25, leaders must measure the initiative’s success, report progress, and celebrate accomplishments.


Success in the Drive to 25 initiative will be informed and measured largely by the metrics established by The Center for Measuring University Performance (CMUP) at Arizona State University and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. CMUP publishes a report each year identifying the top American research universities.

What CMUP metrics include

CMUP evaluates universities using 10 measurements:

  • Total research and development expenditures
  • Federal research and development expenditures
  • Endowment assets
  • Annual giving
  • National Academy members
  • Faculty awards
  • Doctorates granted
  • Post doctoral appointees
  • Median SAT scores
  • National Merit Scholars

WSU’s Institutional Effectiveness Council (IEC) already tracks most of these measures through its ongoing assessment and reporting processes. (See Table 1, at right.)

CMUP’s Top 25 list

CMUP’s top 25 public research universities are those institutions that rank in the top 25—among all public universities—on at least one of the 10 measures cited above. Using those criteria, a total of 40 public institutions qualify as Top 25 public universities.

CMUP’s Top 26-50 list

The next tier of Top Public Research Universities (26-50) identifies those institutions that rank 26 through 50 among their public counterparts on at least one of the 10 measures above. There are 32 public institutions on the Top 26-50 list.

WSU and CMUP metrics compared

WSU already tracks many of these metrics. They are used to assess WSU’s efforts to be a preeminent institution in research and provide a quality, transformative educational experience for undergraduate and graduate students.

Finalizing the metrics

Discussions about the metrics WSU applies to measure success will be an important part of the upcoming town halls. Finalization of the measures will incorporate the feedback of the entire WSU system.

Table 1. Comparison of the CMUP’s measures to the IEC’s data collection based on the four strategic themes in the WSU Strategic Plan, 2014-2019

CMUP MeasureWSU Strategic Plan – IEC Measure x Theme
Total research and development expenditureTheme 1a(1)—Total R&D expenditures
Federal research and development expendituresTheme 1a(2)—Federal R&D expenditures
Endowment assetsTheme 4f(55)—Endowment assets
Annual giving Theme 4f(54)—Annual private support
National Academy MembersTheme 1b(8)—Number of National Academy members per 1,000 faculty
Faculty awardsTheme 1b(6)—Number of prestigious/highly prestigious faculty awards, number of faculty awards per 1,000 faculty
Doctorates grantedTheme 2a(19)—Aligns with the CMUP metric “Graduate degrees awarded including master’s, doctoral, professional, high demand, and STEM”
Post-doc appointeesTheme 1e(15)—Increasing engagement and productivity of graduate students, postdoctoral associates (Not fully assessed)
Median SAT scoresTheme 2(d)29—Average SAT (best score) of incoming freshmen
National Merit and Achievement Scholars