Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Higher Education Administration PhD

First Advisor

Bernard M. Lall

Second Advisor

David A. Faehner

Third Advisor

Jerome D. Thayer


Problem. Much of what is known concerning fund-raising policies and practices at colleges in the United States is anecdotal. Few empirical studies have focused on any aspect of fund raising. No known empirical study has identified those fund-raising policies that might help church-related colleges to be more effective in generating gift income from private philanthropy. The purpose of this study was to bring to light those fund-raising policies that may be associated with effective fund-raising programs at church-related colleges.

Method. Typically, fund-raising productivity is associated with total funds raised. An alternative way of assessing fund-raising effectiveness is to compare what each institution raises to its income potential, if this can be measured.

Through multiple regression techniques, this study estimated the gift income potential of 234 church-related colleges using a set of financial resource and environmental position variables. By comparing the schools' actual income to their potential income, groups of over-productive and underproductive colleges were identified. A survey was sent to colleges in each group to determine the extent to which they implemented 16 fund-raising policies identified in the fund-raising literature. Hypotheses were developed to highlight those policies that were significantly associated with over-productivity in fund raising.

Findings. (1) Significantly more of the over-productive colleges had a full complement of fund-raising functions such as an annual fund, prospect research, capital giving, and deferred or planned giving. (2) Over-productive colleges assigned a higher number of staff to the function known as institutional advancement. (3) Over-productive colleges had larger mailing lists of prospects. (4) A significantly higher number of over-productive colleges published a "President's Report." (5) Significantly more of the over-productive colleges had active trustee committees for development.

Conclusions. Productivity in fund raising among church-related colleges is associated with higher levels of fund-raising effort, institutional responsiveness and accountability, and trustee leadership and involvement.

Subject Area

Fund raising, Educational fund raising, Universities and colleges--Finance


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