Introducing ICPSR - A Hands-on Workshop


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Provides an orientation to ICPSR. Perfect for those that are new to ICPSR or those that are considering membership in ICPSR.

Edited by Linda Detterman

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  • ICPSR’s beginnings: Punch cards of data! In the “old days,” data tapes were copied and “mailed” to the member institution.
  • In April 2010, over 556,300 files available for download. As a sense of volume of downloads, total datasets downloaded in FY 2009 = 592,187 files. (Members-only downloads make up 306,236 of those=52%.) Members downloaded 446,973 datasets overall (75% of downloads were by members)
  • ICPSR conducts primary research about data issues producing data about data! (disclosure risk/confidentiality of research subjects) ICPSR also plays a significant role in “enhancing” several data collections (harmonizing datasets; making longitudinal analysis possible)
  • FIND & ANALYZE DATA: this is the page where you can find several tools to help you find/browse data (you can also use the search box in the upper right corner). You’ll also find the link to our thematic collections (also known as our special topic archives or projects), OR, click on ‘view all’ in the Featured Site area on the right side of the ICPSR home page. ABOUT ICPSR: this page contains all the information about the consortium (history, mission, staff overview, careers, and contact information). You’ll find our subscribed Email Lists here – important if you are interested in our webinars, summer program, or other news about the consortium. Need printed promotional materials on ICPSR or templates for workshops? – see the Publications & Promotional Materials link. DEPOSIT DATA & FINDINGS: this page is for those interested in depositing data at ICPSR or preparing data in good form for long term preservation. Also, links to discussion of protection of respondent confidentiality are found here. DIGITAL CURATION: contains information on acquiring, processing, & preserving data and protecting respondent confidentiality. MEMBERSHIP: contains information on how to join and our list of members. Also, a link to the Official Representatives web site. PARTNERS & PROJECTS: explore our collections and research projects. HELP: information on how to contact us, someone at your institution to contact for help, and several self-help tutorials, & links to social networks
  • We keep talking about “the download.” What’s in a download anyway? First: Many PDFs A copy of the actual questionnaire – it’s not pretty! A copy of the codebook – much more attractive & it contains frequencies! Description & Citation: essentially, the data about the data (metadata) as well as the data citation you are to use when citing the dataset as a source. Second: The actual data file(s) System files for SAS, SPSS, & Stata ASCII files – straight-up data file and/or Setups files for SAS, SPSS, Stata
  • The great thing about our data archive is that there is a lot of data. The biggest challenge for data users is: there is a LOT of data (to weed through & find what you need).
  • Some tips on what to enter in the Search Box and/or how to use the browse features based on your level of knowledge about what data you want to analyze. Our search technology now offers faceted search – search categories or filters on the right side of your screen to help you narrow your search. When you know what you want, enter terms directly in the search box. When you sort of know, explore ICPSR’s browsing tools – themes, data types, variables, subjects, etc. No idea what you want? Explore the bibliography. Do some reading and then “back into” a dataset.
  • When you sort of know what you want – browse the archives/thematic collections and search within them. Note: When you search within an archive, the search limits you to only data within that archive. When you search on the main site of ICPSR, the search returns results from the members-only collection and all archives/collections that ICPSR hosts. Searching from the ICPSR site returns much broader results – this can be a good or bad thing!
  • For institutions that subscribe to OCLC Wildcat – full text is available without leaving the ICPSR Website. Note: July 2009 – Jan 2010: over 275,000 biblio searches conducted! Excellent way to search for students just starting out and/or when you don’t know what you are looking for! As the saying goes, to get familiar with the topic, “Read, read, and read some more!”
  • Let’s put your learning to work now! Hint: Clicking on the dataset of interest will take you to study home page for that dataset. Answers to all these questions can be found on the study home page!
  • Click on “view details” or “View study description” for the full description & citation “ Browse documentation files” contains pdf copies of the codebook and questionnaire (if available) “ List all variables in this study” lists and defines the variables “ View related literature” is the bibliography of articles/reports based on this dataset “ Download” enables you to download the study files – it’s recommended that you select the files you need; however, you and download all files by using the link or the “Quick Download” button – the size of the uncompressed files is noted. “ Analyze online” appears if the study has online analysis (SDA) capability
  • As you seen, ICPSR doesn’t just deliver data. We surround that data with tools and services that support its use and interpretation.
  • You can browse just the datasets with online capabilities if you are only interested in analyzing online.
  • Gender variable by ever smoked marijana variable
  • Formerly the MDRC, the Resource Center for Minority Data, available to members of ICPSR, identifies datasets with sufficient sample and content for analysis of racial and ethnic minority populations in the US. Special tools have been developed to assist data users reviewing these data.
  • Stands for Data-Driven Learning Guide
  • 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 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 SETUPS Uses the 2008 National Election Study to 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.
  • The Quantitative Social Science Digital Library (QSSDL) is a repository of educational materials designed to improve quantitative literacy skills in social science courses. Built especially for faculty teaching post-secondary courses in such areas as demography, economics, geography, political science, social psychology, and sociology, the materials include stand-alone learning activities, tools, and pedagogy services. The repository or portal will be found at
  • Introducing ICPSR - A Hands-on Workshop

    1. 1. An ICPSR Workshop A Hands-on Guide to Using ICPSR Resources
    2. 2. Getting to Know ICPSR <ul><li>What is ICPSR </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Who uses ICPSR </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A rapid tour of our website </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What’s in the download? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How to get started using ICPSR </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creating a MyData account </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Searching tips </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Downloading tips </li></ul></ul><ul><li>ICPSR Training & Instruction </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The Summer Program </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Instruction (Classroom) Resources </li></ul></ul>
    3. 3. What is ICPSR?
    4. 4. <ul><li>One of the world’s oldest and largest social science data archives </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Established in 1962 (as ICPR) so that social scientists could share data </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Data distributed on punch cards, then magnetic reel-to-reel tape, and now: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Data available instantaneously </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Over 7,800 studies with over 64,800 data sets </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Membership organization that started as a partnership among 21 universities, now: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Currently about 700 members world-wide </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Federal funding allows parts of the collection to be available to all </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. What We Do – It’s About Data! <ul><li>Seek out researchers, PIs, research agencies and collect data files and pertinent documents related to the original research </li></ul><ul><li>Process the data and documents </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Output data into multiple formats (ASCII, SAS, SPSS, Stata, SDA) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Preserve it for the future </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Disseminate data directly to the desktops of students and researchers for secondary analysis </li></ul><ul><li>Provide education, training, & instructional resources </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Summer Program in Quantitative Methods </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Undergraduate and graduate student & teaching resources to support quantitative literacy </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. About the Data <ul><li>ICPSR archives both U.S. and international data </li></ul><ul><li>Data Sources: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Government (census, government organizations) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Large data collection efforts (National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, Panel Study of Income Dynamics) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Polls (ABC and CBS news polls, voter polls) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Principle Investigators (Chitwan Valley Family Study, Marital Instability Over the Life Course) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data repurposed (Integrated Fertility Survey Series, Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other organizations (NCAA) </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. Supporting a growing number of disciplines. . . <ul><li>Anthropology </li></ul><ul><li>Criminal Justice </li></ul><ul><li>Demography </li></ul><ul><li>Economics </li></ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul><ul><li>Foreign Policy </li></ul><ul><li>Gerontology </li></ul><ul><li>Health & Medical Policy </li></ul><ul><li>History </li></ul><ul><li>Law/Legal Services </li></ul><ul><li>Political Sciences </li></ul><ul><li>Psychology </li></ul><ul><li>Public Policy </li></ul><ul><li>Sociology </li></ul>
    8. 8. Supporting Social Research
    9. 9. Exploring the ICPSR Web site
    10. 10. Most Popular Downloads, Fall 2009 <ul><li>General Social Surveys </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1972-2006 (Cumulative) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1972-2008 (Cumulative) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>American National Election Study: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Pre- and Post-Election Survey (2008) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, 1994-2002 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Public Use Data (Waves 1 and 2) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Public In-Home Questionnaire </li></ul></ul><ul><li>National Survey on Drug Use and Health, (2007, 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative Psychiatric Epidemiology Surveys, 2001-2003 </li></ul><ul><li>Chinese Household Income Project, 2002 </li></ul><ul><li>SETUPS: Voting Behavior: The 2008 Election </li></ul>
    11. 11. What’s in a “Download?” <ul><li>Documentation files - pdfs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Questionnaire </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Codebook </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Description & Citation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Data in many forms! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>SPSS, SAS, Stata </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ASCII </li></ul></ul>
    12. 12. How to Get Started Using ICPSR
    13. 13. The MyData Account <ul><li>MyData account – operates as authentication and like a shopping cart! </li></ul><ul><li>Authenticate once every six months on campus and you can carry it with you </li></ul><ul><li>Why do we ask questions about your department & status? </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s take a look: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Upper-left corner of every web page </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14. Finding Data: Let the Search Begin! <ul><li>Many search tools found under the Find & Analyze Data tab </li></ul>
    15. 15. Searching for Data - Tips <ul><li>When you know what you want – the search box rules! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>An acronym </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A survey name </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A series name </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>An investigator or agency name </li></ul></ul><ul><li>You sort of know what you want </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Keywords or themes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Populations, time frame, geography </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Type of data </li></ul></ul><ul><li>You (or the student) has no idea what you want! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Start with the Bibliography of Data-Related Literature </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Specialty Archives/Thematic Collections <ul><li>Data grouped by substantive topic </li></ul><ul><li>Many archives (thematic collections), including: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive (SAMHDA)* </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD)* </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA)* </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data Sharing for Demographic Research (DSDR)* </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Resource Center for Minority Data (RCMD) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>International Data Resource Center (IDRC) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Member Archive (ICPSR collection) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>*These archives are federally funded </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. ICPSR’s Bibliography of Data-Related Literature <ul><li>Publications based on data held at ICPSR </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Find an article in our bibliography </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>We display the dataset(s) related to it </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Growing the Data Bibliography </li></ul><ul><ul><li>ICPSR staff continuously searching for data citations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Encouraging the use of data citations (included in all downloads & on the documentation page!) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Please cite the data when you publish and we will find/add you! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Ability to see the article citation and click through for full-text </li></ul><ul><li>Many use the Data Bibliography as a search tool! </li></ul>
    18. 18. Data Exploration Exercise <ul><li>Find the “Search” box on the front page or use the searching aids in Find & Analyze Data </li></ul><ul><li>Identify a study of interest </li></ul><ul><li>Read the description </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Who were the survey participants? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where & when was it collected? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What were the main subjects covered? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Find an article based on these data </li></ul><ul><li>Would you like to download? </li></ul><ul><li>Does this study have online analysis capability? </li></ul>
    19. 19. The Study Home Page
    20. 20. Supporting the Data <ul><li>Free user support </li></ul><ul><li>The “ HELP ” Page offers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>User support (at ICPSR) email and phone contact information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data User Help Center: Short Tutorials & Webinars available 24/7 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Local Support: Who to contact at your local institution </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Glossary of Terms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Networks: Where you can find us on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Slideshare, and more </li></ul></ul>
    21. 21. Online Analysis Software <ul><li>Survey Documentation & Analysis (SDA) developed at UC Berkeley </li></ul><ul><li>Web-based, requires no additional software or licensing </li></ul><ul><li>Over 580 datasets available for use with SDA </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Just interested in online datasets ? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Easy for students but sophisticated analyses available for researchers </li></ul><ul><li>Good for preliminary analyses to determine whether data will work for a particular research question (e.g., RCMD subsetting tools) </li></ul>
    22. 22. What does SDA Look Like?
    23. 23. SDA Output
    24. 24. <ul><li>Focused on comparative analysis of issues affecting racial and ethnic minority populations in the United States </li></ul><ul><li>Tools to verify sample is sufficient for analysis </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>Specialized Tools – The RCMD
    25. 25. Training and Instructional Support
    26. 26. ICPSR Summer Program in Quantitative Methods <ul><li>Instruction on the tools and practices needed to analyze data </li></ul><ul><li>For those with math phobia and those with advanced analysis skills </li></ul><ul><li>3-5 day workshops and 4-8 week courses </li></ul><ul><li>Primarily held in Ann Arbor, MI, </li></ul><ul><li>on the campus of The University </li></ul><ul><li>of Michigan, but some courses </li></ul><ul><li>on other campuses also </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
    27. 27. Engaging Students Through Data <ul><li>Supporting Quantitative Literacy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Roughly 30% of 2-year college students and 20% of 4-year college students show below basic or basic quantitative literacy skills: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>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) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Engages students with disciplines more fully </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Better picture of how social scientists work </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prevents some of the feelings of “disconnect” between substantive and technical courses </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Piques student interest </li></ul><ul><li>Opens the door to the world of data </li></ul>
    28. 28. Bringing Data Into the Classroom <ul><li>In partnership with teaching faculty, ICPSR has developed: </li></ul><ul><li>Online Learning Center (Introductory/Substantive Courses) </li></ul><ul><li>Online tutorials </li></ul><ul><li>Online teaching modules </li></ul><ul><li>Student research opportunities </li></ul>
    29. 29. <ul><li>Tool to help develop classroom lectures and exercises that integrate data early into the learning process. </li></ul><ul><li>Intended for use in introductory-level substantive classes. </li></ul><ul><li>OLC addresses key concerns raised by teaching faculty in focus groups and in-depth interviews. </li></ul><ul><li>Requires no additional software. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Webinar on using the OLC in class on ICPSR website </li></ul>
    30. 30. Using the OLC: How to Find It <ul><li>Directly: </li></ul><ul><li>Through ICPSR homepage </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Under Teaching & Learning </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Coming soon: Data-driven learning guides linked from datasets under “Teach” section on study home page </li></ul>
    31. 31. How to Use the OLC – The DDLG <ul><li>Choosing a DDLG – several search tools within the OLC </li></ul><ul><li>Faculty use of charts in class to introduce topic </li></ul><ul><li>Sending students to the Website to work through a DDLG in class or as homework </li></ul><ul><li>Using DDLG as part of larger project </li></ul>
    32. 32. Online Modules: <ul><li>EDRL </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>ICSC </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>SETUPS </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
    33. 33. (More) Teaching With Data
    34. 34. Research Opportunities for Students <ul><ul><li>Research paper competitions -- a research journal experience & cash prizes! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Paid student internships focusing on investigating social sciences research </li></ul></ul>
    35. 35. For More Info: <ul><li>Explore the website - </li></ul><ul><li>Sign up for our email announcements - </li></ul><ul><li>Become a “fan” of ICPSR on Facebook/follow ICPSR on Twitter </li></ul><ul><li>Attend or view our webinars (open to the public!) - </li></ul><ul><li>Contact user support – [email_address] </li></ul>