PostsecData Partners Commend Department of Education for Data Transparency

Published Sep 23, 2015

by: Amanda Janice Roberson

26 members of the Postsecondary Data Collaborative (PostsecData) applaud the Department of Education for the release of an abundance of data on higher education with the redesigned College Scorecard. Included in the data download are new measures of college access, success, affordability, and workforce outcomes.  Specifically, many of these measures can now be disaggregated by income and first-generation status, which better informs students and families about college choice and student borrowing decisions. For researchers, analysts, and developers, the data release allows these well-informed stakeholders to better translate this complex information to students and policymakers through new reports and data tools.

Many PostsecData partners support this data release, but also recognize that there is room for improvement in data quality and specificity. Lack of program-level data, inclusion of only federally-aided students, and the exclusion of many community colleges and other institutions of higher education from the consumer tool present some limitations of the data. The PostsecData partners listed in the statement suggest the creation of a student unit record system, which could address issues of program-level reporting, student mobility, and institution reporting burden, while maintaining privacy and security.

View the PDF for the full statement.