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Data Files

International Data Explorer You can explore the PIAAC data directly through NCES's online data tool — the International Data Explorer (IDE)

The PIAAC 2012/2014 household and prison data are found in the U.S. database. The national database contains additional variables that are unique to the United States, such as respondents' race and ethnicity. The OECD's international database contains only the PIAAC 2012 household data for the United States currently. Both the international and national databases come with documentation and example programs for reading in data and conducting analyses. These resources are listed below.

U.S. Data Files and Data Resources
The U.S. national PIAAC 2012/2014 household and prison databases can be analyzed online through the International Data Explorer (IDE) or downloaded for statistical analysis from the "PIAAC Publications & Products" section of the NCES PIAAC website. The U.S. databases include all U.S. data, both international and U.S.-only variables. Resources available include:

U.S. PIAAC database (in SPSS and SAS formats)
U.S. Code book and background compendium
U.S. PIAAC national report
U.S. National technical report

The following resources are also available:

PIAAC Background Questionnaires
Cognitive Assessments
Sample Items

Note that some data in the public-use dataset are suppressed due to confidentiality concerns for respondents. Data suppressed in the public-use are available in the U.S. restricted-use database. Besides suppressed data, the restricted-use databases contain more detailed information, such as continuous age and earnings variables. To access the restricted-use data, the restricted-use license has to be applied for and obtained from NCES. More information on the process is available at:

International Data Files and Data Resources
The international PIAAC database can be found under the "Public data and analysis" section of the international OECD PIAAC website. Resources available include:

PIAAC international database (in SPSS and SAS formats)
SAS macros and data analysis manual
STATA macros and data analysis manual
International codebook and data compendia
International technical report

The PIAAC data can be analyzed in SPSS using a stand-alone program known as the International Database Analyzer (IDB). The IDB Analyzer is available at

Note to users: The OECD identified an error in the derivation of the following variables in the PIAAC 2012 data files: NFE12JR, NFE12NJR, FNFE12JR, FNFAET12JR and FNFAET12NJR. This error was corrected and NCES released revised U.S. public-use and restricted-use files, the background compendia, and the codebook on August 18, 2015. The IDE (International Data Explorer) was updated on March 27, 2015. If you have any questions, please contact: