The website is very interesting from the perspective of a social science researcher as it provides a useful window into the relationship dynamics of students in different schools and universities, very easily.
I computed some statistics on the number of people looking for a relationship or friendship within different schools at Columbia and NYU. There statistics were computed on March 19th and 20th, 2011. The results are shown in the bar graphs below. Each graph displays the number of females and males according to a certain metric. The number of females and males are computed using the 'Calculate' button in the 'Search' page of datemyschool.com . The number of males include those who are looking for females or looking for both males and females, and vice versa. The website does not allow restricting search to people who are only looking for friendship or relationship. The website also does not allow searching for people who are alumni or are currently enrolled.
Most of the results may not be considered surprising, but are definitely interesting.
The salient features of these statistics are:
- There are approximately 3800 users in both Columbia and NYU (Figure 1). The site is more popular at Columbia than NYU.
- The ratio of males and females within Columbia and NYU is comparable, but the ratio varies greatly with different schools in each university.
- The number of people with a profile picture is approximately 50-60% of the total population (Figure 2). These people may be considered active users.
- People with a profile picture almost always specify their ethnicity (Figure 4).
- However, only 50-60% of people with a profile picture specify their religious preference, even though religious preference contains options such as 'Other' (Figure 3).
- Graduate students are more likely to upload a picture than undergraduate students. Approximately, one third on undergraduates upload their picture instead of 50% for graduate students.
- Business, engineering, and GSAS have more males than females, whereas teachers college, social work, and medical center have the opposite trend. The distribution of males and females in these schools confirms the commonly held stereotypes. For example, there are many engineering make students looking for females (155 vs 16).
- More men declare themselves to be atheist than woman (54 vs 29) where as more woman declare themselves to be spiritual than men (63 vs 48)
- People with agnostic, atheist, or spiritual beliefs approximately comprise 50% of the total who indicate their religious preference.
- There are more older males than females.
Figure 1: Number of females and males in Columbia and NYU with a profile.
Figure 2: Number of females and males in Columbia and NYU that have a picture with a profile. Observe that only 50% of the people upload a profile picture.
Figure 3: Number of Columbia and NYU students with a profile pic, sorted according to their religion preference. It is optional to specify any of the religion choices as shown in the figure above.
Figure 4: Number of Columbia and NYU students with a profile pic, sorted according to their ethnicity preference. It is optional to specify any of the ethnicity choices as shown in the figure above.
Observe from Figure 3 and 4 that of all the Columbia and NYU students with a profile pic, only 52%-63% specify their religious preference, while more than 90% specify their ethnicity preference.
Figure 5: Of the 311 and 305 Columbia female and male students who have a profile pic and specify their religious preference, the above figure shows the number of people who have selected a particular category.
Figure 6: Of the 560 and 582 Columbia female and male students who have a profile pic and specify their ethnicity preference, the above figure shows the number of people who have selected a particular category.
Figure 7: Age distribution of females and males at Columbia, including the ones with a profile picture. The total numbers do not add up to the numbers in Figure 1 and 2, but I am not sure of the reason.
Figure 8: The total number of male and female students in different Columbia schools. The figure also shows the number of males and females who have uploaded a picture.
(The views expressed in this article are my own and do not reflect the views of my employers)