WORKSHOP 1 - Accessing and Exploring NCES Data through Data Tools and New Training Modules

Pre-Conference Workshop: Thursday March 16, 2017, 8:30am - 12:00pm

Cost: $100

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has several state-of-the-art data tools that allow users to easily access and analyze data. This workshop provides participants with a comprehensive overview of those tools to access data sets. Participants will learn how to access public-use and restricted-use data sets, create reports and data tables, find published reports and conduct analyses in selected statistical tools. NCES offers a large variety of national, state, local, school and student data sets including assessment data, cross sectional data, survey data and administrative records, and participants will better understand which data sets cover their educational topic of interest.

The workshop is designed for graduate students, faculty members, researchers and other users with interest in using NCES data for their research studies, evaluations, and data projects. Participants are not required to have any pre-requisite skills to attend, and should bring their personal laptops for interactive, in-class activities. Each participant will receive an Accessing and Exploring NCES Data “cookbook,” that provides comprehensive instruction and screen shots explaining how to navigate a myriad of NCES data tools and the DLDT.

The workshop will introduce NCES’ Distance Learning Dataset Training System (DLDT). The workshop will also offer an in-depth instruction on four NCES data tools, including the Elementary/Secondary Information System (ELSI); the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Data Explorer; the Educational Demographic and Geographic Estimates (EDGE) table viewer; and the new Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).

Andrew White, senior research statistician at NCES, will present the DLDT system. The DLDT is a system of online computer-based training modules that have been developed over the past 4 years to replace limited attendance in person summer data training seminars and extend the availability of detailed training information to anyone with internet access. The DLDT can be found at

Stephen Q. Cornman and Jumaane Young will provide guidance and advice on using the ELSI data tool to navigate five NCES data sets, including the National Public Education Financial Survey (NPEFS); the School District Finance Survey (F-33); the School Universe Survey; the Local Education Agency Universe Survey; and the State non-fiscal Survey from the Common Core of Data (CCD). The CCD is the primary database on public elementary and secondary education in the United States. The ELSI data tool can be found at Stephen Wheeler and Osei Ampadu will discuss the availability of multiple data files for the F-33 survey on the Census Bureau website.

Emmanuel Sikali will present an introduction and broad overview of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and the NAEP Data Explorer. The NAEP Data Explorer is a rich and dynamic database of all NAEP data. This session will exclusively present an overview of the NAEP Data Explorer (NDE), State Profiles, State Comparisons, Explore NAEP Questions, and District Profiles, which can be accessed at

Douglas Geverdt will present an overview of the Education Demographic and Geographic Estimates (EDGE) program, which provides demographic data at the school district level and access to a variety of geographic data resources. The education-related geographic data includes school districts and their relationships to other geographic areas, locale boundaries, and other variables. Patricia Fisher and Diane Snediker will discuss the availability of geographic and demographic data tabulations for children and parents from the 5 year ACS Community Survey (ACS), demonstrate how to navigate the NCES EDGE site, and download EDGE data. EDGE can be accessed at

Finally, researchers interested in postsecondary data will learn from Gigi Jones how to use the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) data tools through the redesigned IPEDS website. Unlike most of the datasets at NCES, the IPEDS data collection is a compliance data collection, resulting in a 99.9% response rate from over 7,000 U.S. postsecondary institutions. IPEDS collects information about the institution and the students and staff at those institutions. This portion of the Accessing and Exploring NCES Data workshop will teach researchers how to use the IPEDS data through three tools: Data Trends, Comparing Schools, and Downloadable Data Set.


Cost: $100