Many of the statistical datasets on U.S. higher education that are available in the Data Planet repository are drawn from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). IPEDS involves annual institution-level data collections. All postsecondary institutions that participate in federal programs providing financial assistance to students are required to report data using a web-based data collection system, comprising of three collection periods each year. Applications and admissions information is not collected from institutions with an open admissions policy. IPEDS provides basic data needed to describe and analyze trends in postsecondary education in the United States, in terms of the numbers of students enrolled, staff employed, dollars expended, and degrees earned.
Source: National Center for Education Statistics. Integrated Postsecondary Data System. Accessed November 27, 2022, https://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/ReportYourData/IpedsSurvey
The data are collected through the Academic Libraries Survey, a voluntary survey of approximately 3,700 degree-granting postsecondary institutions conducted biennially by the NCES as part of its Library Statistics Program. The dataset summarizes services, staff, collections, and expenditures of academic libraries in 2- and 4-year degree-granting postsecondary institutions in the 50 United States and the District of Columbia.
Any coeducational postsecondary institution in the United States that participates in the federal student financial assistance programs and has an intercollegiate athletic program is required by the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, 20 USC 1092(g) (also known as the Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act [EADA]), to participate in the annual EADA data collection. Through this survey, data are collected by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Postsecondary Education on athletic participation, staffing, and revenues and expenses, by men's, women's, and coed varsity teams.
Click on the links below to view sample DataSheets from Data Planet. The indicators are just a sampling to give you an idea of the granularity of the available data. There are many more indicators on this topic in the repository—add search terms for race/ethnicity, states, counties, and more, or contact your library staff for help in formulating your search strategy. Log in to further explore!
The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is the primary federal entity in the United States for collecting and analyzing data related to education in the U.S. and other nations. NCES is located within the U.S. Department of Education and the Institute of Education Sciences. The NCES fulfills a congressional mandate to collect, collate, analyze, and report complete statistics on the condition of U.S. education; conduct and publish reports; and review and report on education activities internationally. The NCES is one of four centers (along with the National Center for Education Research, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and the National Center for Special Education Research) charged with carrying out the work of the Institute of Education Sciences.
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The American Community Survey also is a great source of data on education in the United States. The American Community Survey (ACS) conducted by the United States Census Bureau provides estimates of the characteristics of the population over a specific time period. The ACS collects data from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, where it is called the Puerto Rico Community Survey. For more information, see American Community Survey, 5-Year Estimates. Below is a sampling of DataSheets related to education in the United States: