Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS)


MHCC completes annual surveys for the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).

The program, IPEDS, the core postsecondary education data collection program for NCES, is a system of survey components designed to collect data from all primary providers of postsecondary education. IPEDS is built around a series of interrelated components that collect institution-level data in such areas as enrollments, program completions, graduation rates, faculty, staff, finances, institutional characteristics, and student financial aid.

The IPEDS Glossary provides definitions for almost 500 postsecondary-related terms used in the collection and dissemination of IPEDS data.

Common Data Set

The Common Data Set (CDS) initiative is a collaborative effort among data providers in the higher education community and publishers as represented by the College Board, Peterson's, and U.S. News & World Report. The combined goal of this collaboration is to improve the quality and accuracy of information provided to all involved in a student's transition into higher education, as well as to reduce the reporting burden on data providers.

This goal is attained by the development of clear, standard data items and definitions in order to determine a specific cohort relevant to each item. Data items and definitions used by the U.S. Department of Education in its higher education surveys often serve as a guide in the continued development of the CDS. Common Data Set items undergo broad review by the CDS Advisory Board as well as by data providers representing secondary schools and two- and four-year colleges. Feedback from those who utilize the CDS also is considered throughout the annual review process.

The CDS is a set of standards and definitions of data items rather than a survey instrument or set of data represented in a database. Each of the higher education surveys conducted by the participating publishers incorporates items from the CDS as well as unique items proprietary to each publisher. Consequently, the publishers' surveys differ in that they utilize varying numbers of items from the CDS.

Those who report data for their colleges are urged to abide by the definitions and the cohorts specified when answering CDS items. They are also urged to use the answers to CDS items when responding to the numerous survey requests they receive, by distributing photocopies of their answers, posting them on their web sites, or by other effective means.

Common Data Set

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 Last Modified: 1/8/2014 10:20:03 AM