Orientation to ICPSR - Center for Research Quality

An ICPSR Workshop
A Hands-on Guide to Using ICPSR Resources
Getting to Know ICPSR
• What is ICPSR? From where do the data come?
• Why do individuals use ICPSR?
 Supporting Social Sciences Research
 Enhancing undergraduate and graduate education
• How do I get started using ICPSR?
 Finding data
 Creating a MyData account
 Downloading data
• How do I use ICPSR in the classroom?
What is ICPSR?
• One of the world’s oldest and largest social science
data archives
 Established in 1962 (as ICPR) so that social scientists could
share data
• Data distributed on punch cards, then magnetic reel-toreel tape, and now:
 Data available instantaneously
 Over 7,600 studies with over 62,500 data sets
• Membership organization that started as a partnership
among 21 universities, now:
 Currently over 690 members world-wide
 Federal funding allows parts of the collection to be available to
What We Do – It’s About Data!
• Seek out researchers, PIs, research agencies and
collect data files and pertinent documents related to
the original research
Process the data and documents
 Output data into multiple formats (ASCII, SAS, SPSS, Stata,
Preserve it for the future
Disseminate data directly to the desktops of students
and researchers for secondary analysis
Provide education, training, & instructional resources
 Summer Program in Quantitative Methods
 Undergraduate and graduate student & teaching resources
to support quantitative literacy
About the Data
• ICPSR archives both U.S. and international data
• Data Sources:
 Government (census, government organizations)
 Large data collection efforts (National Longitudinal Study of
Adolescent Health, Panel Study of Income Dynamics)
 Polls (ABC and CBS news polls, voter polls)
 Principle Investigators (Chitwan Valley Family Study, Marital
Instability Over the Life Course)
 Data repurposed (Integrated Fertility Survey Series, Collaborative
Psychiatric Epidemiology Surveys)
 Other organizations (NCAA)
Supporting a growing number
of disciplines. . .
• Anthropology
• Criminal Justice
• Demography
• Economics
• Education
• Foreign Policy
• Gerontology
• Health & Medical Policy
• History
• Law/Legal Services
• Political Sciences
• Psychology
• Public Policy
• Sociology
Most Popular Downloads, Spring 2009
General Social Surveys
American National Election Study:
Pre- and Post-Election Survey (2004, 2000)
American National Election Studies, 1948-2004 (Cumulative)
Collaborative Psychiatric Epidemiology Surveys
1972-2004 (Cumulative)
1972-2006 (Cumulative)
Cumulative file, 2001-2003
National Survey of American Life, 2001-2003
National Latino and Asian American Study, 2002-2003
National Survey on Drug Use and Health, (2006, 2005, 2003)
European and World Values Surveys Integrated Data File, 1999-2002
Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study, 2001
National Comorbidity Survey: Replication, 2001-2003
Multi-City Study of Urban Inequality, 1992-1994
Supporting Social Research
Exploring the ICPSR Web site
Finding & Downloading Data
• Many search tools found under the Find & Analyze
Data link
• MyData account – operates as authentication and
like a shoping cart!
• Data available in a variety of formats:
ASCII data with set-up files
• Includes documentation
 Codebook – original and reformulated
 Processing notes
• User support available
Searching for Data - Tips
• When you know what you want
An acronym
A survey name
A series name
An investigator or agency name
• You sort of know what you want
 Keywords or themes
 Populations, time frame, geography
 Type of data
• You (or the student) has no idea what you want!
 Start with the Bibliography of Data-Related Literature
Specialty Archives/Thematic Collections
• Data grouped by substantive topic
• Many archives (thematic collections), including:
 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive
 National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD)*
 National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA)*
 Data Sharing for Demographic Research (DSDR)*
 Resource Center for Minority Data (RCMD)
 International Data Resource Center (IDRC)
 General Archive
*These archives are federally funded
Data Exploration Exercise
Find the “Search” box on the front page
Enter a search term of your choice
Identify a study of interest
Read the description
 Who were the survey participants?
 Where & when was it collected?
 What were the main subjects covered?
• Find an article based on these data
• Would you like to download?
• Does this study have online analysis capability?
The Study Home Page
Supporting Data Use
Supporting the Data
• Data and Documentation for students & researchers
 Allows for replication, further understanding of published
findings, new research
Used in papers, theses/dissertations, and reports
Free user support
Bibliography of Data-Related Literature
 Over 48,500 citations
 Full-text available
ICPSR’s Bibliography of DataRelated Literature
• Publications based on data held at ICPSR
• Growing the Data Bibliography
 ICPSR staff continuously searching for data citations
 Encouraging the use of data citations (included in all
downloads & on the documentation page!)
• Ability to see the article citation and click through for
full-text (link resolver)
• Many use the Data Bibliography as a search tool!
Online Analysis Software
• Survey Documentation & Analysis (SDA) developed
at UC Berkeley
• Web-based, requires no additional software or
• Over 500 datasets available for use with SDA
 Just interested in online datasets?
• Easy for students but sophisticated analyses
available for researchers
• Good for preliminary analyses to determine whether
data will work for a particular research question (e.g.,
RCMD subsetting tools)
Specialized Tools – The RCMD
• Focused on comparative analysis of issues affecting
racial and ethnic minority populations in the United
• Tools to verify sample is sufficient for analysis
 http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/MDRC/
Additional ICPSR Resources
• Summer Program in Quantitative Methods
• Subscribed Email Lists
• ICPSR Help
FAQs (searchable)
Data User Help Center (w/ audio/video tutorials)
Local Support
ICPSR Social Networks
Supporting Quantitative
Engaging Students Through Data
• Supporting Quantitative Literacy
 Roughly 30% of 2-year college students and 20% of 4-year college
students show below basic or basic quantitative literacy skills:
These students could not, for example, estimate if their cars
had enough gas to get to a gas station. (The Literacy of
America’s College Students, American Institutes for Research,
January 2006)
• Engages students with disciplines more fully
 Better picture of how social scientists work
 Prevents some of the feelings of “disconnect” between substantive
and technical courses
• Piques student interest
• Opens the door to the world of data
Bringing Data Into the Classroom
In partnership with teaching faculty, ICPSR has developed:
• Online tutorials
• Online teaching modules
• Online Learning Center (Introductory/Substantive
• Student research opportunities
Online Modules:
 Uses the 2008 National Election Study
understand voting behavior (2004 also available)
 Provides substantive background, terms and
descriptions, and embedded exercises to allow
users to get through simple exploratory analyses
of political behavior. Builds crosstabular exercises
based on various questions about the 2008
Presidential elections.
 www.icpsr.umich.edu/SETUPS2008
• Investigating Community and
Social Capital
 Uses 3 data sets including the
General Social Survey, DDB
Needham Life Style Surveys,
and State-level data to
reproduce findings from Robert
Putnam’s Bowling Alone
 Teaches how to browse
codebooks, devise and execute
crosstabulations, and use
summary statistics
 Helps teach replication of
scientific evidence
 http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/ICSC/index.html
Exploring Data Through
Research Literature
• Designed to teach quantitative
research methods to
undergraduates in a different way.
• Integrates ICPSR bibliography of data related
literature into teaching students how make their way
from ideas to empirical work to literature and back.
• Suitable for both research methods and other
substantive courses requiring empirical research
• www.icpsr.umich.edu/EDRL/index.htm
• Tool to help develop classroom lectures and exercises
that integrate data early into the learning process.
• Intended for use in introductory-level substantive classes.
• OLC addresses key concerns raised by teaching faculty
in focus groups and in-depth interviews.
• Requires no additional software.
• www.icpsr.umich.edu/OLC
• Webinar on using the OLC in class on ICPSR website
Using the OLC: How to Find It
• Directly: www.icpsr.umich.edu/OLC
• Through ICPSR homepage
 Under Teaching & Learning
• Coming soon: Data-driven learning guides
linked from datasets under “Teach” section on
study home page
How to Use the OLC
• Choosing a DDLG – several search tools
within the OLC
• Faculty use of charts in class to introduce
• Sending students to the Website to work
through a DDLG in class or as homework
• Using DDLG as part of larger project
Coming Soon! (Fall 2009)
Research Opportunities for Students
 Research paper
competitions -- a
research journal
experience & cash
 Paid student
internships focusing
on investigating social
sciences research
For More Info:
• Explore the website - http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/ICPSR/
• Sign up for our email announcements http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/org/lists/index.jsp
• Attend or view ICPSR webinars (open to the public!)
- http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/help/datausers/index.jsp
• Contact use – [email protected]

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