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Finding & Using Social Science Data from ICPSR: Home

The Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) is an organization based at the University of Michigan with an aim of preserving and making available social science data. CMU is an ICPSR member and CMU faculty, staff and students

New/Updated Studies in ICPSR

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What is ICPSR?

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The Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) is an organization made up of member institutions with the aim of aquiring, perserving and making available social science data.

As CMU faculty, student or staff, you have access to ICPSR's rich collection of data resources, as well as teaching materials to assist in teaching with data. Membership also provides discounts on a wealth of training and learning opportunities offered by ICPSR.

ICPSR archives data collections in sociology, political science, history, and economics. ICPSR has seven special areas of emphasis in gerontology, substance abuse and mental health, criminal justice, child care, health and medical care, education, and demography. 

ICPSR holdings include time series and other types of aggregate data, raw data derived from surveys, censuses, and administrative records. These data were originally collected for specific research or administrative purposes. However, the data have research potential that outlives the original purposes for which they were collected. ICPSR preserves these valuable data resources and makes them publicly available for secondary analysis.

Getting Started

Setting up an ICPSR Account

To start using ICPSR data, create a free account from an on-campus computer.  This can be your own personal laptop or a computer in a lab. Once you have created an account, you will be able to log in from anywhere on or off campus.

To keep you account active, ICPSR recommends that you periodically log in on a computer on CMU's campus.

Teaching and Learning with ICPSR

ICPSR provides a wealth of teaching materials including data driven learning guides, classroom activities, and learning modules.

ICPSR also provides opportunities for learning including their Summer Program in Quantitative Methods in Social Research.

Subject Guide

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Sarah Young
Hunt Library, Rm 109G

Preserving Government Data

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DataLumos is an ICPSR archive for valuable government data resources. ICPSR has a long commitment to safekeeping and disseminating US government and other social science data. DataLumos accepts deposits of public data resources from the community and recommendations of public data resources that ICPSR itself might add to DataLumos.


Thanks to Pam Morgan at Vanderbuilt University for the use of her ICPSR LibGuide as inspiration.