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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How can I access survey data?

A: Go to the Downloads page. If a dataset is available for public use, it can be downloaded directly from this website. Beyond the public-use datasets currently listed, public-use datasets from additional surveys may be forthcoming. Please contact the helpdesk at for information on when new datasets are expected to be available. For access to restricted-use datasets, you will need to contact the helpdesk at to obtain clearance.

Q: Will a survey on a certain topic be administered again in future years?

A: Most FRSS-PEQIS surveys are only administered once. Some surveys, like surveys on distance education, remedial education, Internet access, and teacher preparation and qualifications, have been conducted more than once in the past, but may or may not be conducted again in the future. You may contact the helpdesk at to find out if a survey on a particular topic is planned.

Q: Can I have analyses run for me?

A:No. However, if the data are available (check Downloads page) you may obtain the data you wish to analyze.

Q: Is it possible to have data tables computed online for FRSS-PEQIS surveys?

A:Not at this time.

Q: Why do the poverty categories (e.g., less than 11 percent) vary across different FRSS-PEQIS publications?

A:The old poverty categories were based on empirically derived quartiles. However, a decision was made recently within NCES to adjust the categories to match those used for Title I.

Q: Who is represented in the survey samples?

A: All FRSS-PEQIS survey results are based on nationally representative samples, as opposed to samples that are drawn to be representative of individual states. Therefore, state-level estimates with FRSS-PEQIS data are not available.

Q: Can I get a list of institutions that gave a particular answer to a survey item, or find out how a particular institution responded?

A: No. When the data were collected, institutions were assured that their survey responses would remain confidential.

Q: Can I download and use FRSS survey questionnaires?

A:Yes. Survey questionnaires are public domain and may be found, when applicable, in the appendix section of the publication.

Q: Who may request a survey?

A: Surveys may only be requested by principal operating components of the U.S. Department of Education or agencies working on issues relevant to Department policymakers.

Other resources for general secondary and postsecondary information: