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ICPSR: A large archive of interdisciplinary data

With over 250,000 files of research data spanning across disciplines, the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) is both an exceptional resource and a bit daunting.

So what is ICPSR?

ICPSR is a gigantic international group of universities that maintains a large archive of interdisciplinary data. Although ICPSR began as a repository for social and political science research, it has expanded to cover a wide range of disciplines including education, gender studies, criminal justice, media studies, health sciences, and much more.

What ICPSR is great for is finding, depositing, and learning to use datasets. By datasets, I mean all of those surveys, censuses, and technical information that make our articles and reports possible (and verifiable).

For example, if you were interested in doing a study regarding the relationships between Americans' social backgrounds and their opinions of public policy, you may head over to ICPSR and locate the American National Election Studies Time Series Study, which has such data spanning from 1948 to 2016.

Additionally, ICPSR provides some great learning and teaching resources for using datasets.

If you have any questions regarding finding data or using ICPSR for your project or class, please contact David Luftig, a research services librarian and ICPSR organizational representative at the University of Dayton. 

ICPSR’s search Interface:

ICPSR’s teaching and learning resources:

— David Luftig, Research Services Librarian

Note: The blog image is a word cloud from ICPSR containing the subjects most commonly searched on its site (source).

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