After several years in development, the Association of Theological Schools (ATS) in early 2020 launched a data visualization tool to help schools easily access enrollment data and clearly see short- and long-term trends across an array of data points.
A powerful function of the tool is its capacity to make comparisons between institutions, strengthening a data-driven understanding of market position. While ATS has long provided summaries of data it collects from member schools, the tool marks the first time that 30 years of voluminous data are available in one place. Users can view the results of their searches by school type or size, by degree program, and by denomination. These specifications can be further sorted by race, gender, and other characteristics over time.
“This initiative is part of ATS’s resolve to make data more accessible and involve more leaders in interpreting the data,” says ATS executive director Frank Yamada.
The new data visualization tool may prove valuable for all seminary decision makers. For example, users can discover the dramatic shift in majority-minority enrollment in D.Min. programs over the past two decades and how non-M.Div. master’s program enrollment has grown during that same period. Board members also will find much of interest by comparing their schools’ enrollment profile to peer schools, over time and by degree program.
The tool is available at www.ats.edu/data-visualization-tool.
- ILLUSTRATION BY PETER GRUNDINI