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Collecting Race and Ethnicity Data from Students and Staff
Using the New Categories

  • Institutions MUST give students and staff the opportunity to self-report their race and ethnicity. Students and staff do NOT have to respond. Institutions MUST use a 2-part question to collect these data. The first part of the question collects ethnicity, and the second part of the question collects race. The questions must be presented in this order:
    1. Are you Hispanic or Latino?
    2. Select one or more of the following races:
      • American Indian or Alaska Native
      • Asian
      • Black or African American
      • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander
      • White
  • Students and staff MUST always be shown both parts of the question, regardless of their answer to either part.
  • In the second part of the question, the wording MUST read “…one or more…” instead of alternatives such as “all that apply.”
  • Institutions may NOT present the following choices (or any variations thereof) to students and staff:
    • Unknown
    • Refuse or decline to respond
    • None of the above
    • Other
    • Nonresident alien
  • Institutions MAY collect subcategories of the 6 race and ethnicity categories presented in the example 2-part question above.
  • Institutions are NOT required to resurvey continuing students and existing staff, but this is encouraged.

Reporting Race and Ethnicity Data to IPEDS
Using the New Categories

  • Report race and ethnicity data to IPEDS as follows:
If the individual self identifies as… Report to IPEDS as…
Hispanic only, or Hispanic and any race category Hispanic
Not Hispanic; American Indian or Alaska Native only American Indian or Alaska Native
Not Hispanic; Asian only Asian
Not Hispanic; Black or African American only Black or African American
Not Hispanic; Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander only Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander
Not Hispanic; White only White
Not Hispanic; more than one race category Two or more races
If the individual… Report to IPEDS as…
Refuses to respond to both questions Unknown race and ethnicity
Responds No to the Hispanic question, but does not respond to the race question Unknown race and ethnicity
Responds to the race question, but does not respond to the Hispanic question Report race as outlined above, as if individual self-identified as non-Hispanic
Is a nonresident alien according to the visa and citizenship information on record at the institution Nonresident alien
  • Institutions are NOT required to map race and ethnicity data for continuing students and existing staff from the old categories to the new categories, but may want to. Mapped data may be reported to IPEDS.
  • Reporting using the new categories is mandatory for the Fall Enrollment component in 2010-11 IPEDS. Additionally, institutions must use the new categories if they report the Fall Staff section of the Human Resources component in 2010-11.
  • Reporting using the new categories is mandatory for the Completions, 12-month Enrollment, and Graduation Rates components in 2011-12 IPEDS.

Storing Race and Ethnicity Data

  • Institutions must retain the responses to both parts of the two-part question for 3 years. This means that the data as reported to IPEDS are not sufficient to satisfy this record retention requirement. In addition, if there is litigation, a claim, an audit, or other action which began prior to the end of the 3-year storage period, applicable records must be retained until the completion of the action.
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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education