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Offices & Services

Institutional Research

Common Data Set

The Common Data Set (CDS) initiative is a collaborative effort among institutional officials who are responsible for providing data in the higher education community, and publishers such as the College Board, Peterson’s, and U.S. News & World Report. The goal of this collaboration is to improve the quality, consistency, and accuracy of information provided to all involved in a student’s transition into higher education.


This goal is attained by the development of clear, standard data items and definitions throughout the CDS. Data definitions used by the U.S. Department of Education in its higher education (IPEDS) surveys frequently serve as a guide in the ongoing development of the CDS.

The Common Data Set workbook contains multiple worksheets with information on 10 different aspects of the College:

  1. General Information
  2. Enrollment and Persistence
  3. First-time, First-Year (Freshman) Admission
  4. Transfer Admission
  5. Academic Offerings and Policies
  6. Student Life
  7. Annual Expenses
  8. Financial Aid
  9. Instructional Faculty and Class Size
  10. Degrees Conferred

Washington College responses to various items are marked in blue throughout the CDS. The last worksheet in the excel file provides definitions for all of the data items in each section.

If you have any questions about the information provided in the Washington College Common Data Sets, please contact Victor Sensenig at 410-778-7207 or email