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Finding Data/Data Support


Getting Started

Offers research strategies for finding data in general and select broad subject areas.

First Steps

Define your topic: Before searching for data, clearly define what you need. Create a specific statement of exactly the kind of data you need.

Define Topic and Unit of Analysis

Identify logical, authoritative sources. Determine the most likely group to collect the data you need.    Identify Data Sources

Locate Government Agencies, Organizations and Boston College commercial subscriptions.

Review Literature Review Literature by Discipline

Search the major bibliographic databases in your field to find data citations for data used in research in your field.

Additional questions to ask:

  • What is the quality of the data?
  • How was the data collected?
  • Do I understand the data?
  • Is there documentation?
  • Notes for a table?
  • Does this data support my hypothesis?

Restricted Data

Some data supplied by data archives such as ICPSR contain restricted data. This data requires special security to insure protection of confidential material. If you identify restricted data that you wish to request, please contact Data Services for help.

If you can't find what you need or want to recommend data for purchase, contact the Digital Scholarship team

Data Services Support

Data Support Services:

  • Locating data for research or teaching
  • Class demonstrations for finding data, using statistical tools and Geographic Information Systems
  • Statistical packages support
  • Conversion utilities
  • Database access and retrieval methods
  • Advice on alternative software that might be used for a specific analysis resolution of programming problems ('debugging') using any available ITS Research Services license or vendor
  • Web-based documentation to assist users with packages, databases, and web-centric resources for statistical computing
  • Support for access to restricted data

Request Help Consultation or Class presentation

Subject Guide

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Lester Carver
315 O'Neill Library
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
Subjects: Data Services

Data/Statistics/GIS Support

Need help with Data, Statistics, GIS, SPSS, Stata, a data management plan, or where to archive your data?