Quinnipiac University Polling Institute

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Quinnipiac University Poll
Headquarters 60 Westwoods Road
Hamden, Connecticut
Affiliations Quinnipiac University
Staff
300[1]
Website poll.qu.edu

The Quinnipiac University Poll is a public opinion polling center based at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. It surveys public opinion in Connecticut, Florida, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, and nationally.[2]

It is considerably larger than other academic polling centers, including the Franklin & Marshall College Poll, which only surveys Pennsylvania.[1] The organization employs about 300 interviewers, generally drawing about a quarter of its employees from political science, communications, psychology, and sociology majors, and the remainder of interviewers, from those not affiliated with the university.[1] The poll has a full-time staff of ten.[1] The university does not disclose Quinnipiac University Poll's operating budget, and the poll does not accept clients or outside funding.[1]

In 2007, Quinnipiac University Poll underwent construction of a new two-story building that was expected to double its available capacity to 160 calling cubicles.[1] The purpose of the capacity expansion was to allow polling multiple states at once, rectifying a problem that arose during the 2006 Connecticut Senate election where other polls were canceled to support that poll.[1]

The polling operation began informally in 1988 in conjunction with a marketing class.[3] It became formal in 1994 when the university hired a CBS News analyst to assess the data being gained.[3] It subsequently focused on the Northeastern states, gradually expanding during presidential elections to cover swing states as well.[3] The institute is funded by the university.[3] Quinnipiac University is widely known for its poll;[4] the publicity it has generated has been credited with increasing the university's enrollment.[1]

The poll has been cited by major news outlets throughout North America and Europe, including The Washington Post,[5] Fox News,[6] USA Today,[7] The New York Times,[8] CNN,[9] and Reuters.[10] Quinnipiac University Poll receives national recognition for its independent surveys of residents throughout the United States. It conducts public opinion polls on politics and public policy as a public service as well as for academic research.[1][3] Andrew S. Tanenbaum, the founder of the poll-analysis website Electoral-vote.com, compared major pollsters' performances in the 2010 midterm Senate elections and concluded that Quinnipiac was the most accurate, with a mean error of 2.0 percent.[11]

In his most recent article on polling and polling institutes, well known American statistician and writer Nate Silver, referred to the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. In his article, "The State of the Polls 2016", Silver stated,"The best-performing polls recently have been those from Monmouth University and those from Marist College. Both apply “gold standard” methodologies, using live telephone interviews and placing calls to cellphones as well as landlines, and both participate in the AAPOR Transparency Initiative. Quinnipiac University, another “gold standard” pollster, has also performed fairly well of late. So has Fox News, which switched to new polling partners in 2011 and has gotten good results since then.

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