Charleston software maker Blackbaud Inc. has unearthed another piece of evidence showing that the after-effects of the last economic downturn are fading.

Donors and contributions to universities and other places of higher learning returned to pre-recession levels in 2013, the technology company said in a new report released Wednesday.

Among the key findings:

The number of alumni donors was down a median of 1.1 percent for both public and private institutions compared to 2012.

Revenue was up 5.3 percent, marking the third consecutive year of growth for that metric.

Donors gave 5.8 percent more to their schools last year, for an average of $531.

"Before the economic recession, the national trends in higher education were 'donors down' and 'dollars up,'" said report author Shaun Keister, who is vice chancellor of development and alumni relations at the University of California, Davis. "That all changed in 2009 with both key metrics dipping and dipping sharply. For the second year in a row, however, we are seeing a return to prerecession trends and patterns, indicating that the impact of the recession has been minimized."

The report is based on giving trends at 123 colleges and other higher-education institutions.

Daniel Island-based Blackbaud sells software and service to the nonprofit industry. It is one of the largest high-tech firms headquartered in the Charleston region.

A copy of the alumni donor study can be downloaded at www.blackbaud.com/higherEd-report.