The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) collects survey and research data containing individually identifiable information, which is confidential and protected by federal law.
IES uses the term "restricted-use data" for such information. The terms "restricted-use data" and "subject data" are synonymous. (See Appendix A, Definition of Terms.)
IES uses the term "public-use data" for survey data when the individually identifiable information has been coded or deleted to protect the confidentiality of survey respondents. Access to public-use data does not require a license, for these data are available to the general public. For more information on public-use data, see NCES online catalog at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/.
The relevant laws about survey data that contain individually identifiable information are found in the following statutes. More information on these laws is in Chapter 1:
IES will lend restricted-use data only to qualified organizations in the United States, using a strict licensing process described in Chapter 2. Individual researchers must apply through an organization (e.g., a university or a research institution). To qualify, an organization must submit:
Restricted-use data must be kept secure at all times. "Secure" means that the data are protected from unauthorized access or disclosure in accordance with the terms of the License and the specified security procedures outlined in the Security Plan Form. The security procedures described in Chapter 3 include the computer security requirements for the standalone, desktop computer configuration.
Under the terms of the License, IES has the right to conduct unannounced, unscheduled inspections of the data user's site to assess compliance with the terms of the License and the required security procedures. The inspection procedures are described in Chapter 4.