How do I submit a data request?

Email IRRIS@austin.utexas.edu to submit a request for data.

How long will it take for me to receive the data I requested?

Not all data requests can be fulfilled. Requests will be fulfilled if they fall in line with FERPA, university, and office guidelines. IRRIS requests at least two weeks to fulfill most data requests. IRRIS needs at least a month's notice to fulfill more in-depth requests, such as those that will support grants or IRB-approved research studies. IRRIS must prioritize state and federal reporting deadlines as well as requests made by university leadership. Thus, depending on the time of year, some requests will take longer to fill.

What types of data can IRRIS provide?

IRRIS can fulfill most data requests related to student and faculty information. IRRIS cannot fulfill requests related to staff information. Please reach out to Workforce Analytics for staff data, or visit their UT staff dashboard for available statistics. IRRIS cannot fulfill requests related to alumni information. Please reach out to Texas Exes for alumni information.

In most situations, IRRIS will provide aggregate summaries of data versus row-level data. This decision helps us achieve our goal to be proper stewards of data by reducing the chances of a data security risk and misuse of data.

Where can I find existing summaries of student and faculty data and when are these summaries updated?

There are several publicly available dashboards that provide student and faculty data. The Student Trends dashboard has information on student enrollment and outcomes. This dashboard is based on 12th class day census data and is typically updated by October. The Faculty Trends dashboard provides demographic and employment information on faculty at the university and is based on November 1st census data. This dashboard is typically updated by December.  

Additional student and faculty information can be found under the Facts and Figures, Compliance, and Surveys menus.  

What is census data?

Census data refers to information that is captured on a particular day in the academic cycle. Capturing data on census dates ensures consistency in how data are reported and is often considered the standard for data comparison and contextualization. IRRIS relies on census data for all external reports, as state and federal compliance reporting requires the use of this type of data. The census data for student reporting is captured on the 12th class day of each semester while the census data for faculty reporting is captured on November 1st.  

Why do different departments on campus present slightly different numbers on the same topic?

Variances in numbers often come down to differences in data sources or definitions. Although IRRIS often relies on census data to report numbers, some departments on campus have access to live data to address their needs, especially in situations where they need the most up-to-date information. The question you are trying to answer typically determines what data sources and definitions will work best for your needs. If data are to be presented externally, IRRIS strongly recommends the use of census data. 

Where and when can I access course grade data?

Course grades are not accessible until the semester after the grades were obtained. Before grades can become accessible, they must go through an extensive cross-department validation process. IRRIS only publishes summaries of grade data for Fall and Spring semesters. Please see our UT Course Grade Distribution dashboard.

Can IRRIS help me with a survey project?

IRRIS encourages anyone interested in a survey project to reach out to IRRIS first before committing to the endeavor. IRRIS can provide guidance on whether you should conduct a survey . IRRIS can also provide guidance on university expectations and best practices related to survey administration. In some instances, IRRIS can conduct your survey projects for you - if they are designed to evaluate university experiences, meet leadership approval, and align with university strategic initiatives.

Why does IRRIS discourage some survey projects?

Surveys are administered to students and faculty at UT Austin more often than you may realize. Survey fatigue is a serious issue on campus that we are aiming to ameliorate. Survey projects should be taken as seriously as any other research study. IRRIS is more likely to discourage a survey effort if the survey is poorly written, does not align with university needs and initiatives, does not have leadership support, and shows no indication that proper methods are in place to protect the survey respondents' data (such as a lack of Institutional Review Board approval). To learn more about survey best practices, go to the Institutional Surveys Consortium (ISC) page. The ISC is a cross-department group on campus sponsored by IRRIS that aims to improve UT survey activity.

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