Cornell University Cornell University CISER

CISER Data Archive

Obtaining Data Archive Files from the CISER Catalog

Cornell University faculty, students, and staff may download most Data Archive files on the CISER file server from links in our online catalog.

Please note the following:

  • Use of Archive data and documentation is limited to current faculty, staff, and students for the purpose of academic research.  Other use or any redistribution is a violation of Cornell's Campus Code of Conduct and Policy Regarding Abuse of Computers and Network Systems.  Acquiring Archive files means that you understand and acknowledge these University policies.  In addition, some data distributors restrict use of their data; see our policies page for additional information.

  • All files are ftped in compressed  (zip) format  for use in a Windows environment.  Use WinZIP, Stuffit Expander, or another utility that uncompresses zip files. Windows XP and UNIX/Linux have the ability to uncompress zip files. Although some statistical software can handle files whether formatted for Windows or UNIX, UNIX users can convert files by using DOS2UNIX freeware.  Some files require use of third-party applications or proprietary software; acquiring such software is the responsibility of the user.

  • Some studies are restricted to those having accounts on the CISER Research Computing System.  These files cannot be downloaded from catalog links.

  • Some datasets do not have machine-readable documentation.  Printed material in the Data Archive is intended for on-site use.  Check the Cornell University Library catalog for additional documentation holdings.

How to use raw data files and interpret documentation

An Introduction to Using Data at DPLS, Data & Information Services Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Introduces file structures and using documentation.  This is based, in part, on "How to Use Raw Data" produced by Electronic Data Services, Columbia University.

How to Use a Codebook, Princeton University

Briefly introduces file structures and how to use a codebook effectively.

Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research

See how to interpret records from an ASCII data files and types of data formats.

Using statistical software packages:  Cornell University campus support


The CISER Help Desk consultants provide walk-in assistance and respond to e-mail and brief phone questions.  A statistical software FAQ links to sample programs for many of the software packages available in CISER's computing environmentWorkshops are held every semester that cover programming fundamentals of SAS, SPSS, Stata, and R.

Cornell Statistical Consutling Unit

Advises on research design, basic data analysis, and interpreting results.  Walk-in appointments for brief questions, consultation appointments are needed for indepth assistance.  Staff offer workshops every semester.