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Data

Description of Data

Survey Instruments

Variable Lookup Table

Measurement Memos
--Constructed Variable Memos
--Suggested Variable Recodings
--Sources of Information

Accessing Data

Data FAQs


Data FAQs (preliminary version Ackert 9-19-10 with menu, Mindy updated links 1-11-11)

Click to jump:
+ How are variable names constructed?
+ Were the same questions asked every year? How do I know which questions were asked during a specific year?
+ What are the Carnegie Classifications?
+ What is the National Student Clearinghouse? Which variables does the BHS obtain from the Clearinghouse?
+ What are the SEI and Industry Codes?
+ What is the College Success Foundation?
+ Are there are recorded variables in the BHS data?
+ What is the “Variable Lookup Table”?
+ Who has access to the "Variable Lookup Table"?
+ Are any of the data suppressed?
+ How are write-in responses handled?
+ Where do I find information about the data collection process, including sampling frame, sample size, and response rates?

How are variable names constructed?

The BHS data set contains data from multiple sources. Much of the data is taken from three major survey instruments: the student survey, given to students in their senior year, the parent survey, given to parents of high school seniors, and the follow-up survey, given to students one year after their senior year in high school. Variables created from these three surveys are given a prefix that indicates the source of the data. The following three prefixes are used for variables that come from survey questionnaires:

s- student survey
p- parent survey
f- follow-up survey

These prefixes are followed by a number that indicates the corresponding question number on the survey instrument. For instance “s002” refers to question 2 on the student survey. Some questions contain multiple parts. For example, question “s005_b” refers to part b of question 5.

Other variables were created using information from the Carnegie Classifications, the National Student Clearinghouse, and the College Success Foundation. For information on the naming conventions for Carnegie Classification codes for college plans and college attendance from the one-year follow-up and Clearinghouse data, please consult the appropriate memo. Variables from the College Success Foundation contain the prefix “gates” (there are only four College Success Foundation variables).

See FAQs below for more information about the Carnegie Classifications and Clearinghouse data.
^is this sentence necessary?

Were the same questions asked every year? How do I know which questions were asked during a specific year?

The student questionnaire was initially administered in 2000. After this year, the questionnaire was modified slightly. Some questions from the 2000 survey were maintained in the 2002-2005 surveys, but others were dropped or added. In 2005, some questions were also added to the survey, and do not appear in earlier questionnaires. An overview of question comparability between survey years is available here.

What are the Carnegie Classifications?

The Carnegie Classifications are a set of codes that offer a succinct description of the characteristics of higher education institutions in the United States. As the Carnegie Classification website states, “…the Carnegie Classification has been the leading framework for describing institutional diversity in U.S. higher education. It has been widely used in the study of higher education, both as a way to represent and control for institutional differences, and also in the design of research studies to ensure adequate representation of sampled institutions, students, or faculty.” In the BHS data, the Carnegie Classifications are used to code post-secondary institutions. The Carnegie Classifications were applied to write-in data from the follow-up survey, such as college names, and to data obtained from the National Student Clearinghouse.

For more on the Carnegie Classifications, consult the following links:
http://classifications.carnegiefoundation.org/
UW-BHS Carnegie Codings Memo

What is the National Student Clearinghouse? Which variables does the BHS obtain from the Clearinghouse?

The National Student Clearinghouse is a non-profit organization that provides information on post-secondary enrollment and degree completion. The Clearinghouse provides an educational record verification service that is used by major employers, student service providers, insurance companies, credit issuers, and the U.S. Department of Education. The Clearinghouse data allows the BHS team to examine post-secondary enrollment patterns and graduation rates among the survey respondents. All Clearinghouse data that refers to post-secondary institutions is coded using the Carnegie Classifications.

Clearinghouse website and profile pdf:
http://www.studentclearinghouse.org/about/default.htm
http://www.studentclearinghouse.org/about/pdfs/Clearinghouse_profile.pdf

What are the SEI and Industry Codes?

SEI and Industry codes are used for any variables related to employment, including student employment, future employment aspirations, and parental employment (both student reports and parents’ self-reports). Responses were coded to the 2000 Census Occupational and Industry Codes, and the SEI indices are based on the work of Rob Warren, Robert Hauser, and Carl Frederick.

OccupationSEIfollowup_memo
OccupationSEIparent_memo
OccupationSEIparentreport
OccupationSEIstudent_memo
OccupationSEIstudentaspire_memo

What is the College Success Foundation?

The College Success Foundation (CSF) administered the Washington State Achievers (WSA) Scholarship program. The College Success Foundation provided information on application to the WSA program, receipt of the scholarship, and attendance at a WSA high school. These variables are labeled with the prefix “gates.”

CSF website:
http://www.collegesuccessfoundation.org/Page.aspx?pid=413

Are there are recorded variables in the BHS data?

The majority of variable recoding in the BHS data is left to the analyst. The BHS team has posted memos with relevant SPSS syntax for the most commonly recoded variables. Researchers working with BHS data are highly encouraged to consult these memos.

The BHS team has recoded some variables in the BHS data set. These include race variables (racewhit, raceafam, racenatv, raceoasn, raceeasn, racecamb, raceviet, racefili, racenhopi, racehisp, racemexi, racemiss) and immigrant generation variables (gen1st, gen2nd, gen3rd). For more information on these variables, please consult the following memos:

Race (racecond) memo
Generational status (gener) memo

What is the “Variable Lookup Table”?

The Variable Lookup Table is similar to codebooks that can be found on the websites of large-scale surveys. It has a search function that allows the researcher to look up variables that are pertinent to a specific area of inquiry. The Variable Lookup Table also contains a description of the variable and the variable’s frequency distribution.

Who has access to the "Variable Lookup Table"?

INFORMATION FORTHCOMING

Are any of the data suppressed?

Some of the BHS data is suppressed in order to maintain respondent anonymity. Any question involving a write-in field is recoded as a variable. In addition, some questions did not become variables because they would identify the respondent or had cell sizes that were too small.

How are write-in responses handled?

Any write-in text field in the questionnaire has been removed or recoded to protect respondent anonymity. Post-secondary institutions were recoded using Carnegie Classifications and occupational information was recoded using census Occupation and Industry codes or SEI codes. Write-ins for race were used to create racial codes and classifications (see FAQ above regarding recoded variables). Place of birth was also a write-in response, and was recoded into categories that were used to create immigrant generation variables. To identify which questions had write-in responses, please consult the survey instrument.

Race (racecond) memo
Generational status (gener) memo

Where do I find information about the data collection process, including sampling frame, sample size, and response rates?

Please see the Description of Data page on the UW-BHS website:
https://depts.washington.edu/uwbhs/description.shtml

 

Please direct questions and comments to uwbhs@uw.edu