Quinnipiac University Polling Institute

The Quinnipiac University Polling Institute 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.

It is considerably larger than other academic polling centers, including the Franklin & Marshall College Poll, which only surveys Pennsylvania. The organization employs about 160 work-study students as interviewers, generally drawing from political science, communications, psychology, and sociology majors, as well as some interviewers that are not affiliated with the university. The poll has a full-time staff of ten. The university does not disclose the Institute's operating budget, and the poll does not accept clients or outside funding.

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

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

The poll has been cited by major news outlets throughout North America and Europe, including The Washington Post, Fox News, USA Today, The New York Times, CNN, and Reuters. Quinnipiac's Polling Institute 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. 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.


Quinnipiac University Polling Institute

Quinnipiac University Polling Institute
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