2017-2018 Common Data Set

The Common Data Set (CDS) was developed through collaboration with the National Center for Education Statistics and among colleges and universities, publishers of college guides, representatives of higher education organizations, and high school counselors. Questions and definitions used by the U.S. Department of Education in its college surveys are a guide in the development of CDS items. The goal of the CDS is to improve the quality, accuracy, and comparability of data reported by colleges and to reduce the burden on colleges of compiling and reporting information through asking questions in a standard way across numerous surveys.

Definitions of data elements are maintained by the Common Data Set Initiative.

A. General Information
Section A includes university address, classification of undergraduate institution, academic year calendar, and degrees offered.

B. Enrollment and Persistence
Section B includes Fall enrollment by gender, enrollment by race/ethnicity, number of degrees awarded, graduation rates, retention rates.

C. First-Time, First-Year (Freshman) Admission
Section C includes freshman application and enrollment data, admissions requirements, and entrance exam scores.

D. Transfer Admission
Section D includes transfer student admissions and enrollment data, transfer admissions requirements and transfer credit policies.

E. Academic Offerings
Section E includes special study options and academic areas required for graduation.

F. Student Life
Section F includes freshman and undergraduate student life demographics, campus activities, and housing options.

G. Annual Expenses
Section G includes undergraduate full-time costs: tuition, required fees, and room and board.

H. Financial Aid
Section H includes average aid awarded by need and non-need and types of aid available.

I. Instructional Faculty and Class Size
Section I includes faculty demographics, student-to-faculty ratio, and undergraduate class and section size.

J. Degrees Conferred
Section J includes the percentage of undergraduate degrees awarded by discipline areas.

Common Data Set Definitions
A comprehensive list of definitions relating to terms within the CDS.


For previous years, please contact the Office of Institutional Research.