New Education Opportunity: NSF Public Use Data Course

NSF-eAIR-Image.pngThis week, AIR released its newest online education opportunity, the National Science Foundation (NSF) Public Use Data Course. Available at no cost, this course is perfect for any individual seeking to understand the resources and tools publicly available with the NSF Student Surveys and Establishment Surveys.

Upon completion of the self-paced course, participants will be able to: identify the NSF student and establishment surveys, locate and download data from both the student and establishment surveys, and use the NSF online tools to create simple tabular outputs to answer research questions.

The course is comprised of two “core” lessons. The first lesson focuses on the NSF Student Surveys, and includes the following topics:

  • The National Survey of College Graduates (NSCG): Conducted biennially since 1993, this survey provides information on the demographics of college graduates, family status, education history, employment and occupation information, and job satisfaction.

  • Survey of Doctorate Recipients (SDR): This longitudinal survey began in 1973 and collects information from recipients of research doctorates in science, engineering, or health from a U.S. institution. It also collects information on post-graduate outcomes, choices made about employment and occupation, and employment-related outcomes such as salary and job satisfaction.

  • Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED): This annual survey focuses on those who receive research doctorate degrees during the past academic year. This survey provides information on the demographics of these recipients, such as: education, post-graduation plans, employment information, and financial support.

In addition, the first lesson provides training on the Scientists and Engineers Statistical Data System (SESTAT) that can be used to analyze data from select student surveys.

The second lesson focuses on the NSF Establishment Surveys, which are completed at the institution level. The NCES Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) is an example of a well-known establishment survey. Lesson two includes the following topics:

  • Higher Education Research and Development Survey (HERD): This survey provides information about research and development expenditures at academic institutions and hospitals, medical schools, research stations and centers, and/or foundations that are operated by them. It includes R&D expenditures in science and engineering (S&E) disciplines, as well as R&D in non-S&E fields, such as education and the arts.

  • Federally Funded Research and Development Centers – Research and Development Survey (FRDC R&D): This survey is an annual census of the nation’s 42 federally funded R&D centers (e.g., Jet Propulsion Lab, Fermi National Laboratory) including those that are operated solely by academic institutions, industrial organizations, and nonprofit organizations. Survey questions include expenditures on R&D and the sources of those funds.

  • Survey of Graduate Students and Postdoctorates in Science (GSS): This survey began in 1966 and collects information from colleges and universities that grant research-based graduate degrees in science and engineering. Survey metrics provide information which describes the characteristics of graduate students—and later postdoctoral and doctorate-holding, non-faculty researchers—in selected fields.

 Learn more and register for the NSF Public Use Data Course at​ ​



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