FREE Resources for Those Interested in Higher Education

Below, in alpha order, are various hyperlinked resources for researching higher education data, research and policy. This list will be updated periodically. If you know of any resources that I have not included and that you have found helpful, please leave a comment and I will be happy to check them out and consider adding them to the list.

College Completion

-College Completion is a microsite produced by The Chronicle of Higher Education with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Its goal is to share data on completion rates in American higher education in a visually stimulating way. You can benchmark institutions against their peers, and the site also offers plenty of links to resources for more information, as well as past and current news coverage of this topic.

College & University Professional Association for Human Resources

– As the association for HR professionals in higher education, CUPA-HR provides leadership on higher education workplace issues in the U.S. and abroad. They monitor trends, explore emerging workforce issues, conduct research, and promote strategic discussions among colleges and universities.

Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce

The Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce is an independent, nonprofit research and policy institute affiliated with the Georgetown Public Policy Institute that studies the link between education, career qualifications, and workforce demands.

Harvard’s Useable Knowledge Website

An education research website from the Harvard Graduate School of Education at Harvard University. The website features interviews with and discussions among Harvard researchers and their co-investigators elsewhere about new research, books and best practices. The site is updated regularly with new content relating to both K-12 and higher education.

Illinois State Grapevine Project

– Since 1960, Grapevine has published annual compilations of data on state tax  support for higher education, including general fund appropriations for  universities, colleges, community colleges, and state higher education  agencies. Each year’s Grapevine survey has asked states for tax appropriations data for the new fiscal year and  for revisions (if any) to data reported in previous years.

Inside Higher Ed

– A daily online publication focused on college and university topics.

Measuring Up- The National Report Card on Higher Education

-The purpose of the state report card is to provide the general public and policymakers with information they can use to assess and improve postsecondary education in each state. Measuring Up 2008 is the fifth in a series of biennial reports.The report card grades in six overall performance categories: preparation, participation, affordability, completion, benefits, and learning.

National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO)

– While NACUBO is a private membership organization it often publishes annual reports that are freely available online. Some NACUBO reports of note include an annual tuition discounting study, a student financial services benchmarking study, as well as a host of ad hoc studies and reports.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

-The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education in the U.S. and other nations. NCES is located within the U.S. Department of Education and the Institute of Education Sciences. Housed within the NCES is the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). You can also check out the IPEDS “Trend Generator” to make sleek, fairly customizable trend tables and charts.

The Common Education Data Standards (CEDS)- An NCES Initiative

– NCES is working with key stakeholders to develop voluntary standards for a core set of data elements to help states create P-20 data systems. Standard data definitions will help ensure that data shared across institutions are consistent and comparable. This, in turn, will make it easier for states to learn how students fare as they move across institutions, state lines, and school levels.

Southern Education Foundation (SEF)

-SEF is a public charity with offices in Atlanta, Georgia.  Through a variety of programs and strategies involving research, analysis, advocacy, technical assistance, and outreach, SEF works to: improve education policy and practice, inform the public about education issues and policy options, strengthen parent, school, and private sector efforts to better meet the needs of underachieving students and prepare America’s future workforce, and promote a high quality of universal education.

Southern Regional Education Board (SREB)

-The Southern Regional Education Board works with 16 member states to improve
public education at every level, from pre-K through Ph.D. SREB is a
nonprofit, nonpartisan organization headquartered in Atlanta. Member states are
Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland,
Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas,
Virginia and West Virginia. The SREB Data Exchange is is a cooperative effort of SREB and the statewide higher education governing and coordinating boards in the South. Founded in 1969-1970, it is one of the nation’s oldest, most comprehensive sources of comparative data on public higher education. The Data Exchange annually collects, compiles and publishes the most up-to-date statistics on postsecondary education in the 16-state SREB region, including information by institutional category.

State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO)

– SHEEO, founded in 1954, is the national association of state higher education leaders who serve statewide coordinating and governing boards and other state policy agencies for higher education. SHEEO serves its members as an advocate for state policy leadership, as a liaison between states and the federal government, as a vehicle for learning from and collaborating with peers, and as a source of information and analysis on educational and public policy issues.

Strategy Labs

-Produced by Lumina, the Strategy Labs site contains information on evidence-based state policies and examples of successful state policy implementation, all in support of Lumina’s nationwide completion agenda.

The Center for Measuring University Performance (The Center or MUP)

– The MUP is a research enterprise focused on the competitive national context for major research universities. MUP data and analysis have attracted considerable attention around the country, and MUP associates have participated in discussions about incentive and reward systems that lead to improved university performance with a number of institutions and individuals in the United States and abroad.

The Chronicle of Higher Education

– The Chronicle of Higher Education is the No. 1 source of news, information, and jobs for college and university faculty members and administrators. Based in Washington, D.C., The Chronicle has more than 70 writers, editors, and international correspondents.

The College Board

– A primary source for data and policy related to the SAT and AP courses.

The Delta Cost Project

– The Delta Cost Project is focused on the spending part of the college cost problem- how spending relates to access and success, and ways that costs can be controlled without compromising quality. The organization advocates for a change in the traditional approaches to higher education finance- from a focus on inputs (enrollments) and efficiency measures (funding per student)- to an integrated view of productivity, and how funds are used to ensure access, equity, and successful learning results.

The Lumina Foundation

– With its Goal 2025 (which seeks to ensure that 60% of the U.S. adult populace has some postsecondary education by 2025) and significant funding ability, the Lumina Foundation has recently made a huge foray into higher education policy making.

The National Center for Academic Transformation

– The National Center for Academic Transformation (NCAT) works to advance the use of information technology in improving student learning and reducing instructional costs. NCAT creates and conducts innovative programs that use technology to improve learning and reduce costs in partnership with colleges and universities. NCAT analyzes the results of these programs to identify and document specific techniques and practices that lead to success, to develop models for future practice and to learn what next steps are needed to scale the programs.

The National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS)

– The NCHEMS Information Center for State Higher Education Policymaking and Analysis (The Information Center) provides state policymakers and analysts timely and accurate data and information that are useful in making sound higher education policy decisions. The Information Center is a comprehensive “one-stop-shop” for state-level higher  data and information, and a leader in coordinating the collection of missing data and information that are crucial for higher education policy analysis.

The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center

– The National Student Clearinghouse is a non-profit group which conducts student verification and research services for colleges, which turn over their data voluntarily. The Clearinghouse publishes national enrollment estimates every six months, breaking out the numbers by sectors and states, as well as on students’ age groups, gender and part- or full-time status.

The Voluntary System of Accountability (VSA) College Portrait

– For each VSA participating institution, the College Portrait supplies basic comparable information through a common web report. Information includes student and campus characteristics, cost of attendance, success and progress rates, campus safety, class size, student experiences on campus, and student learning outcomes. The majority of the data elements selected are from currently available data sources with established definitions and reporting conventions.

U.S. Department of Education College Affordability and Transparency Center

– Using point and click menus you can find out which colleges have the highest and lowest tuition and net prices, how much particular career and vocational programs cost, how fast college costs are going up and search for by linking to NCES’s College Navigator

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