Data Definitions Bibliography


Data Definitions Bibliography

Newly Added Resources


Common Education Data Standards
NCES, U. S. Department of Education

The Common Education Data Standards (CEDS) is a specified set of the most commonly used education data elements to support the effective exchange of data within and across states, as students transition between educational sectors and levels, and for federal reporting. This common vocabulary will enable more consistent and comparable data to be used throughout all education levels and sectors necessary to support improved student achievement. The standards are being developed by NCES with the assistance of a CEDS Stakeholder Group that includes representatives from states, districts, institutions of higher education, state higher education agencies, early childhood organizations, federal program offices, interoperability standards organizations, and key education associations and non-profit organizations. CEDS is a voluntary effort and will increase data interoperability, portability, and comparability across states, districts, and higher education organizations
The CEDS website can now be found at

NCES Releases CEDS Version 5

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is pleased to announce the release of Common Education Data Standards (CEDS) Version 5. CEDS is a national collaborative effort to develop voluntary, common data standards for a key set of education data elements to streamline the exchange, comparison, and understanding of data within and across P-20W institutions and sectors. CEDS Version 5 includes a broad scope of elements spanning much of the P-20W spectrum and includes nearly 250 new and updated data elements and 1,580 unique elements.
Version 5 of CEDS can be found at the CEDS website:

College- and Career-Ready Standards

Setting clear expectations for what student excellence actually looks like is critical for a student to be successful—before and after high school graduation. While this may seem intuitive, every year, far too many of our nation’s college students end up in remedial courses because they were under-prepared in high school. Across the country, states have chosen to upgrade their standards by adopting and implementing either the Common Core State Standards or other college- and career-ready standards. As a result, students are gaining a deeper understanding of subject matter, are learning to think critically, and are applying their learning to real-world problems. CCSSO assists states in implementing new standards through proactive engagement and outreach, and by connecting chiefs with the tools they need to help schools and teachers bring the standards to life for their students.

National Forum on Education Statistics
NCES, U. S. Department of Education

The Forum strives to provide states, districts, and schools with helpful advice on the collection, maintenance, and use of elementary and secondary education data. To this end, Forum members—a diverse group of representatives from state and local education agencies (appointed by their state’s superintendent), the federal government, and other organizations with an interest in education data—work collaboratively to address problems, develop resources, identify best practices, and consider new approaches to improving data collection and utility, all while remaining sensitive to privacy concerns and administrative burden.

Federal, state, and local education agencies have been using Forum products for over two decades to inform data system planning and development efforts. All Forum publications and resources are free of charge and can be accessed through this website, along with detailed information about the organization, upcoming events, and a large collection of other helpful resources related to education data.

Consult this comprehensive site: National Center for Education Statistics. 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.

Preparing America’s Students for Success
Common Core State Standards Initiative, 2015

Since the release of the Common Core State Standards in 2010, numerous groups, including the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center), and the lead writers of the standards, have developed resources and supporting materials to assist states, districts, schools, and educators with implementing the Common Core. Learn why the Common Core is important. Explore the Common Core Standards and learn why they were created.

Transforming Data to Information in Service of Learning
SETDA, May 2013

SETDA developed this new report, “Transforming Data to Information in Service of Learning,” to raise awareness about the major K-12 data standards and interoperability initiatives underway to address this gap and to offer recommendations for how K-12 education can become more responsive to educators and better targeted toward individual student success. Broadly speaking, these initiatives focus on ensuing consistent data definitions, enabling the sharing of information across systems, and facilitating the search and discovery of education resources. The report will help education leaders understand the context for these interoperability initiatives and their relationship to teaching and learning. The widespread implementation of new and emerging interoperability initiatives will be instrumental to realizing the full potential of technology in education.

New leadership will be required from the federal government, state governments, and the technology industry to make needed advances. SETDA offers three recommendations to move the field forward:
     • Recommendation 1: Develop a consensus-based, long-term vision and roadmap for interoperability to ensure investments in technology and
       digital learning are cost effective and meet educator and student needs.
     • Recommendation 2:Establish an ongoing mechanism to address transparency related to the privacy and security of student data.
     • Recommendation 3: Address data standards and interoperability issues with vendors as part of state and district procurement processes for
       educational technology and digital learning solutions, including for the adoption of free solutions.

The Federal Role in Safeguarding Student Data
Data Quality Campaign,

As our school systems move into the digital age, we believe that the federal government has a role in prioritizing student data privacy and security and building trust in the use of student information. Read about the context to frame the discussion about what the federal government can do to support the education field in safeguarding student data. DQC has identified three broad areas for federal action. 18 organizations agree with these identified area. Check these out to see if you agree.

Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act an Important Step Forward
Posted by Data Quality Campaign, Washington, Bill passed May 1, 2015

The Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act (H.R. 2092) represents an important step by Congress to establish an agreed upon framework of acceptable access, use, and sharing of education data in service of student learning.

Today’s bill introduction is recognition that everyone who has a stake in education, including the federal government, has a role to play in ensuring that we protect the personal information of our students as we use data to personalize learning, spur innovation, and help our young people achieve their goals.

This bill recognizes the critical role of data and technology in education and proposes new, strong protections that ensure student data are safeguarded. These protections still allow educators and families to be empowered with data to inform education decision making, and ensure that service providers are able to create and deliver innovative and effective resources and tools that help prepare students for success in school and beyond. Our students deserve nothing less.

High-quality education data are essential for improving students’ achievement in school and preparing them for success in life. When effectively used, these data can empower educators and families with the information they need to make decisions to help all learners succeed. Read the Student Data Principles.


Data Definitions Bibliography


Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems Grant Program
NCES, U.S. Department of Education

Better decisions require better information. This principle lies at the heart of the Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS) Grant Program. Through grants and a growing range of services and resources, the program has helped propel the successful design, development, implementation, and expansion of K12 and P-20W (early learning through the workforce) longitudinal data systems. These systems are intended to enhance the ability of states to efficiently and accurately manage, analyze, and use education data, including individual student records. They should help states, districts, schools, educators, and other stakeholders make data-informed decisions to improve student learning and outcomes; as well as to facilitate research to increase student achievement and close achievement gaps.

National Education Data Model
NCES, U.S. Department of Education

The National Education Data Model (NEDM) is a conceptual but detailed representation of the education information domain. The NEDM strives to be a shared understanding among all education stakeholders as to what information needs to be collected and managed at the local level in order to enable effective instruction of students and superior leadership of schools.

NEDM is a conceptual data model and NOT a data collection. There are no data in NEDM or collected by NEDM.

“Common Education Data Standards
Council of Chief State School Officers

The CEDS Initiative is a joint effort by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education, has been defined as the “collaborative effort to identify, refine, and create a core set of Common Education Data Standards for early childhood, K-12, post-secondary and workforce domains that will attract widespread, voluntary adoption, enable comparability between agencies within states and across states, and ultimately enhance policy-making and student achievement.” Educators and policy makers need clear, consistent data about students and schools in order to draw valid comparisons between key indicators of educational success and identify areas where we can improve classroom instruction and student support from early childhood through K-12 education to postsecondary education and the workforce.


Higher Education

Common Education Data Standards
State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO)

Since the beginning of the CEDS effort in 2009, SHEEO has been a strong supporter of the development efforts and a leader in the CEDS Consortium, a partnership with CCSSO, the P20W Education Standards Council (PESC), the System Interoperability Framework (SIF) Association, the Data Quality Campaign (DQC), and NCES in the promotion of the standards.
With the release of CEDS 3.0 (January 2013), there are highly useful and still growing standards for the postsecondary community.

Association for Institutional Research

With more than 4,000 members, the Association for Institutional Research (AIR) is the world’s largest professional organization for institutional researchers. The organization has been a long-time supporter of CEDS and encourages its members to be involved in the project.

“Facilitating Development of a Multistate Longitudinal Data Exchange”
Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education

With support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) has embarked on a project entitled Facilitating Development of a Multistate Longitudinal Data Exchange. Its principal objective is to pilot a data exchange among several states. Initially, four Western states (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Hawaii) have been invited to participate – allowing for more comprehensive analyses of the production, stock, and flows of human capital through a regional, multi-state approach. During this four-year, $1.5 million project, WICHE will coordinate efforts to develop the necessary architecture for the exchange of data, effectively govern the exchange, produce standard reports, and ensure the protection of privacy. Scroll down to access the PowerPoint slides from their presentation.

Systems Interoperability Framework

The System Interoperability Framework (SIF) Association is a unique, non-profit collaboration composed of over 3,200 schools, districts, local authorities, states, U.S. and international ministries of education, software vendors and consultants who collectively work to define the rules and regulations for educational software data interoperability.


K-12 and Higher Education

P20W Education Standards Council

Focused on “Unlocking the Power of Data” since 1997, PESC is a community-based, umbrella association of colleges and universities; college and university systems; professional and commercial organizations; data, software and service providers; non-profit organizations and associations; and state and federal government agencies. PESC has been an early and consistent supporter of the CEDS initiative.

Data Quality Campaign

In 2013, the Data Quality Campaign (DQC) focused its theory of action and resources on priority issues that reflect both state policymakers’ current policy conversations and the issues DQC believes states need to focus on to achieve their goals. The DQC Fact Sheet explains all about DQC, including who we are, why we advocate, what we do, how we work, our impact, our Board of Directors, and our funders.

Every state has committed to preparing all students for postsecondary education and careers. In order to best meet college and career readiness goals, states can take action on three data priorities ensuring that data are aligned with policy, linked, and useful.

DQC Resources
DQC, June 2013

This is a guide to DQC’s resources, including publications, videos and website features.