Carnegie Mellon University

Accessing CMU's Data

January 17, 2023

Accessing CMU's Data

You have likely used data at some point at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). Maybe you reported on enrolled students or classes in a semester. Perhaps, the number of faculty or staff members in a department helped make a financial decision.

Where did you get that data? There are many data sources across the university. Knowing where to acquire data and the accuracy of that information is a concern. This is where data governance and data stewardship come into play.

The CMU data governance program ensures that institutional administrative data is accurate, complete, and documented. Support and guidance are provided by:

  • The Data Stewardship Council (DSC) oversees the data governance program and initiatives and determines university data standards, guidelines, and best practices. This group represents each primary university business area.
  • The Operations Committee dives deeper into data issues and makes recommendations to the DSC. They are a component of the DSC and are comprised of members from across the university.
  • The Data Advisory Panel (DAP) champions implementing and enforcing data management and utilization policies, procedures, and best practices. This is a collaborative community of data consumers from various departments across the university.

Together they work to democratize institutional data, remove data silos, and help us safeguard the confidentiality and integrity of the information we need to succeed.

How Can I Access University Data?

First, search the Data Glossary. The Data Glossary can help you identify and understand the data elements you need. Once you know what data elements are required, request access.

Are you looking for student or employee summary information? Institutional Research and Analysis (IR&A) is an excellent place to acquire this. Other data can be requested through our centralized request and approval pilot. The pilot connects data consumers with the appropriate data steward to make data requests more seamless.

Data Guidance

Once you have access to university data, it is your responsibility to protect that information. Certain data can be shared publicly, and other data is restricted. The DSC has a framework for classifying institutional data based on its sensitivity, value, and criticality to the University. Refer to the Data Classification and Internal Data Sharing guidelines for more information on where data can be shared, like a website, press release, or report.

Refer to Research Data Services in the University Libraries for research and scholarly data guidance.

Request Access to Data