HigherEd.org, a contractor to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), is holding a series of Technical Review Panel (TRP) meetings about its IPEDS Student Unit Record Feasibility Study. NCES is supporting the conduct of a feasibility study about the possibility of redesigning the IPEDS collection of student-related data to incorporate individual, student unit records. If implemented, this system would completely replace the submission of institution-level data for the enrollment, completions, graduation rates, and student financial aid components; and it would replace parts of the institutional characteristics component related to net price of attendance.
NCES would use the unit record data to generate the existing IPEDS institutional data that make up the Peer Analysis System and COOL. The use of unit records in the collection process would allow for improved calculations of graduation rates and other policy variables. The redesigned IPEDS could provide aggregate reports on transfers across states or sectors, as well as more detailed data on retention. It has been suggested that it could reduce institutional burden by using the data to generate the 1098-T tax forms required by the IRS.
The feasibility study is examining all issues related to this proposal, including but not limited to privacy, reporting burden, technical capabilities, the coordination of reporting for public institutions, timing/census dates, and implementation.
Three Technical Review Panels (TRPs) will be held to get feedback and suggestions for the feasibility study. This first TRP will focus on the perspective of states and systems (including state systems and those for private institutions) and will be held October 28-29. The second TRP will focus on the input of institutions, especially from the institutional research and registrar communities, and will be held November 3-4. The third TRP will focus on the input of associations, interested groups, and other stakeholders and will be held November 9-10.
Invitations to sponsored participants to each of the three TRPs will be issued shortly. While the project budget does not allow the contractor to pay travel costs for everyone who would like to participate, other interested parties may attend these open meetings at their own expense. The first two TRPs will be held at the Hyatt Arlington near Washington, D.C. and the location of the third will be announced shortly. Space is limited, so please indicate your desire to attend by contacting HigherEd.org at firstname.lastname@example.org or (540) 722-6060.