Blue Hen Poll

Official Information Site



About the Blue Hen Poll

This is the official information site for the Blue Hen Poll (BHP) project. The BHP is a public opinion survey designed to examine the attitudes and opinions of students at the University of Delaware (UD). The BHP is planned, marketed, and presented by UD students with faculty supervision. The goals of the project are to 1) inform the UD community (including on-campus, Newark, and surrounding areas of Newark) about what UD students think, how they feel, and what they do, 2) provide an outlet for students to have their opinions heard, and 3) to provide a social research opportunity for undergraduate students to learn about survey methodology and quantitative analysis. Currently, the project is run as part of a Problems in American Politics: Advanced Data Analysis in Public Opinion Research (POSC 413) course.


The BHP is supported by generous funding from an Instructional Grant sponsored by UD's Center for Teaching Effectiveness, General Education Initiative, and Information Technologies. The grant funds projects which "advance the General Education Goals by means of instructionally-enhanced and/or technology-enhanced course redesign." The project is also supported by the Office of the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and International Programs , the Office of Institutional Research and Planning, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the Department of Political Science and International Relations.

Methodology and Design

The population of interest for the BHP was UD full-time undergraduate students enrolled at the Newark campus. The research group decided on a web survey as the method of data collection because of the relatively low costs of involvement, and high convenience for both the research team and the students taking the survey. In advance of fielding the survey, members of the BHP research team distributed and posted flyers and information about the project, as well as scheduled kiosks in the Trabant Center to answer any questions students might have about the project. On March 12th, pre-notification emails were sent to a random sample of 1,500 undergraduate students informing them that they had been randomly selected to take part in a "student designed" survey. On March 13th, a public "kick-off" event was held on campus to inform the public (and participants) about the project, as well as answer any questions about the BHP.

The survey was emailed to the random sample on March 13th, and remained available until midnight on April 11, 2008. Throughout the fielding period the sample received a total of four "reminder" notifications, two (in the first five days, March 14 and March 17), one before spring break (March 27), and a final one during the last week the survey was in the field (April 7). The reminders included a link allowing them to be removed from any further notifications.

Approximately 643 students responded to the survey, a response rate of 43%. Of those students who responded to the survey, 85% completed the entire survey. In terms of accuracy, other things being equal, based on our sample size, our population size, and a 95% confidence level, we can estimate that the margin of error (MOE) for our study is + or - 4%. This means that we are 95% confident the results from our sample will fall within 4% of the true population.


PDF version of the BLUE HEN POLL (12 pages)

Take the 2008 BLUE HEN POLL (this data will not be combined with the current data)


PDF versions of tables of responses from the 2008 Blue Hen Poll (34 pages)

May 6th Public Release Presentation Slides (Power Point slides in PDF format)

News about the Blue Hen Poll

UDaily Press Release (March 14, 2008)

UD Review (March 11, 2008) by Lydia Woolever

UD Review (March 11, 2008) - Editorial

UD Review (April 22, 2008) - Alexandra Duszak

Wilmington News Journal (March 23, 2008) by Rachel Kipp

UD Review (May 6, 2008) by Sarah Lipman

UD Review Editorial (May 9, 2008) by Maria Zinszer

UD Daily Press Release (May 9, 2008)

Contact and Further Information

For more information about this research or about the rights of research participants, or in case of research-related concerns, contact the Blue Hen Poll Research Team at bluehenpoll@udel.edu, the faculty supervisor David C. Wilson at dcwilson@udel.edu or 302-831-1935, or the Chair of the University of Delaware Human Subject Review Boards, University Of Delaware, Newark, DE  19716, 302-831-2136.