Survey shows frequent parent-student communication

Graduate being photographed
A graduate is photographed by his family before Commencement ceremonies.

The vast majority of Stanford parents—86 percent—talk to their children via text, email or phone at least once a week, according to a recent survey of Stanford Parents’ Newsletter readers.

Specifically, 13 percent of parents who chose to take the survey say they communicate with their kids daily, 41 percent two to three times per week and 32 percent once a week.

No wonder, then, that when they need information about the university, 55 percent of those parents turn first to their child, followed by the Stanford web pages (28 percent) and the parents’ website (10 percent).

Most respondents are satisfied with the frequency with which the university is communicating with them. Only 13 percent of parents want more, while 86 percent say the frequency is about right.

When they receive the parents’ newsletter via email, 30 percent of parents read the issue thoroughly, while 36 percent read most, but not all, the articles. Besides the newsletter, parents like Stanford, the magazine of the alumni association; Stanford Report, the university’s official news source; and the Stanford Daily, the student newspaper. Twitter and Facebook are read less frequently by Stanford parents.

Parents responding to the survey think the Stanford Parents’ Newsletter does a pretty good job at covering events, including New Student Orientation, Parents and Family Weekend and Commencement. Tuition and financial aid and campus safety are also subjects parents think are covered well. The university could, however, do better with new academic programs and health care at Stanford.