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The Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) holds thousands of archived data sets available for use to member organizations such as the University of Oregon. To find data, users may search for data sets at the ICPSR Web site. The Data Services Lab is able to retrieve data from ICPSR if you are not able to do so or are having trouble with the various data formats.

More information and resources on ICPSR are available through the pages under the ICPSR in the main menu (above).

Search: To Search the ICPSR archive, go to the ICPSR homepage and choose “Find & Analyze Data” from the main menu. On the “Find Data” page there are two main ways to search the ICPSR holdings:

  1. Search Engine: you can use keywords or type in a research question to find data on the topic you are interested in.
  2. Browse: under “More Search Options” you will find various browsing options. For example, you can browse the archive by topic or by the geographical coverage of each study. The last option (“View all studies”) allows you to browse through ALL the studies available (over 3,200). If you browse by topic, you will find that the archive contains searchable data sets from external sources (last item under Topic Classifications). Most of these data sets are publicly available, but others require you to fill out an application to request the data and submit a data protection plan. CASIT Data Services can assist you with requesting restricted-use data (for more information, click here).

Abstracts: The abstracts associated with each study number provide information for you to decide whether or not the data set is appropriate for your interests.

Codebook: The codebooks associated with each data sets are also useful to determine whether the variables you are interested in are available. You do not need to login to the ICPSR website to look at the documentation materials (such as codebooks) for each study. You can simply click on them. (Codebooks, datasets and other documentation materials are generally in .zip form. If you cannot unzip the compressed file once you’ve downloaded it and if the file is too large for you to download in the uncompressed format, contact CASIT Data Services for help).

Downloading Datasets

On campus: To download a dataset you must log in to the ICPSR website (if you have not created an account yet, please follow the instructions in “How to Create an Account” below). Once logged in you should be able to download any public-use dataset.

Please note that some of ICPSR’s datasets contain confidential information. To access these restricted-use datasets you need to apply online.

Also note that you do not have to be logged in to the ICPSR website in order to access the documentation materials for each study. You only need to log in if you want to download the actual datasets.

Off campus: You can download datasets from any off-campus computer if you have logged in to the ICPSR website within the last six months. Every time you log in to the ICPSR website while on campus, your account is authenticated as being a University of Oregon account for another six months.

If you have logged in to the ICPSR website while on campus within the last six months, you can download public-use datasest by simply logging in to the ICPSR website.

For further assistance with downloading ICPSR webiste, please contact CASIT Data Services or visit ICPSR’s help page on this topic.

How to Create an Account

From the ICPSR Homepage

On the ICPSR homepage, click on “Find and Analyze Data”. In the upper left-hand corner, click on “Log In/Create Account”.

There are three options for creating an account. The first two are through your Facebook or Google account. (Note that this involves ‘third party authentication’. For details on privacy issues related to this option, click here).

The third option is to create a “MyData” account by clicking on “ICPSR MyData”. You can then follow the instructions for New Users on the right.

From the webpage of individual studies

If you are on the webpage of an individual ICPSR study and you click on any of the download options available for that study (e.g. ASCII or SAS, SPSS and Stata setup files), you will be prompted to log in to your account or to create a new one. On the ‘Log into ICPSR’ page, click on the ‘Create Account’ button, under the instructions for New Users.

For further assistance, please contact CASIT Data Services or visit the help pages on ICPSR’s website.

Internships, Research Competitions & Courses

2015 ICPSR Research Paper Competitions

ICPSR is still accepting applications for three 2015 competitions (ICPSR Undergraduate, ICPSR Master’s, and Resource Center for Minority Data). Awards: $1,000 for first place, $750 for second place. There are separate undergraduate and master’s prizes for this competition.

Deadline: All papers and corresponding entry forms must be received by midnight Pacific Standard Time, January 31, 2015.

Summer Undergraduate Internship Program

The ICPSR summer internship program provides undergraduate students with a unique and expansive research experience that introduces all aspects of social science research and includes supported exploration of a research query from start to finish, data management training, and focused methodological education in quantitative research.
Deadline: Applications are due by January 31, 2015. Please note that late or incomplete applications will not be considered for this opportunity.

2015 ICPSR Summer Program in Quantitative Methods of Social Research

ICPSR offers summer courses in research design, statistics, data analysis, and social science methodology. Registration for the 2015 ICPSR Summer Program begins in February 2015. Note that individuals affiliated with the University of Oregon are eligible for reduced registration fees and some financial support is available (mainly for graduate students).

More information:


Resources for Instructors

The ICPSR website also offers multiple resources for instructors who want to introduce students to basic statistical concepts or for those who want to introduce different topics in the social sciences using data.

In the Resources for Instructors section you will find short data exercises, which you can browse by dataset, by type of statistical analysis method (e.g. correlations, frequency distributions, linear regression) or by subject (e.g. inequality, China). In the “Short Exercises Section”, click on ‘view all’ and use the filters on the left.

The site also contains longer data exercises under “Exercise Sets (Modules)”.

Video Tutorials

On ICPSR’s YouTube channel, you will find a series of videos on different aspects of the ICPSR archive, including tutorials for using the ICPSR website and downloading data, as well as webinars on specific data collections.

Three tutorials that might be particularly useful are on how to read ICPSR data into SAS, SPSS and Stata.

New at ICPSR

Every couple of weeks ICPSR announces the most recent additions to their data archive and new releases from ICPSR’s partner organizations. CASIT Data Services posts recent data additions here.

New data at ICPSR and partner organizations:

Date: 2015-04-26

Date: 2015-04-19

Date: 2015-04-12

Date: 2015-03-29

Date: 2015-03-22

Date: 2015-03-08

Date: 2015-03-01

Date: 2015-02-15

Date: 2015-02-08

Date: 2015-01-25

Date: 2015-01-18

Date: 2015-01-12

Date: 2014-12-22

Date: 2014-12-14

Date: 2014-12-07

Date: 2014-11-30

Date: 2014-11-23

Date: 2014-11-17

Date: 2014-11-03

Date: 2014-10-27

Date: 2014-10-20

Date: 2014-10-12

Date: 2014-10-06

Date: 2014-09-29

Date: 2014-06-09

Date: 2014-06-02

Date: 2014-05-20

Date: 2014-05-05

Date: 2014-04-21

Date: 2014-04-14

Date: 2014-04-07

Date: 2014-03-31

Date: 2014-03-25

Date: 2014-03-16

Date: 2014-03-10

Date: 2014-03-03

Date: 2014-02-24

Date: 2014-02-10

Date: 2014-02-03

Date: 2013-11-18

Date: 2013-11-03

Date: 2013-10-27

Date: 2013-10-21

Date: 2013-10-13

Date: 2013-10-06

Date: 2013-09-29

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