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Finding Statistics & Data: Home


When locating statistics you may need to consult several sources in order to find what you're looking for. Most government agencies collect statistical data and make that information available online. This research guide aims to organize and direct you to a selection of these resources. Some keywords to use for searching in library databases include, statistics OR data OR poll OR survey OR percentages, and can be combined with a topic keyword, like bullying. Resources like articles will cite primary resources like data/datasets and provide a citation if you'd like to follow up on the cited source.

Featured Resources

Research Databases

Data Sets
Census & Demographic

Sage StatsUS Statistics on healthcare, crime, education, employment, religion, and government finances. Users can easily browse by location or by topic, and compare across locations or across time. Mapping and graphing tools enhance exploration and comparison. Data is exportable. Data sets are continually updated and added.
Coverage: 1990s to present. Some series date back to 1977. Type Data: Documentation/Tutorial When you find data you're interested in, explore it using the mapping and graphing tools, compare it with other data sets, or export it to Excel.

Scatter plot comparing household incomes and senior citizen population by ZIP Code. Users can filter ZIP code scatter plots down to United States regions, states, and counties to identify communities populated by a particular market segment.

Data-Planet Statistical Datasets: Interactive database of statistics that enables users to create tables, maps, and figures from a variety data sources covering banking, criminal justice, education, energy, food and agriculture, government, health, housing and construction, industry and commerce, labor and employment, natural resources and environment, income, cost of living, stocks, transportation, and more. Data holdings for the United States are significant with some data available at state, county, or local geographies. International data, available at the country level, include population, food and agriculture, labor, trade, and more. Data are organized by subject and source.

What is the difference between Data and Statistics?

Data is the raw information from which statistics are created. Put in the reverse, statistics provide an interpretation and summary of data.
  • Statistical tables, charts, and graphs
  • Reported numbers and percentages in an article

If you’re looking for a quick number, you want a statistic. A statistic will answer “how much” or “how many”. A statistic repeats a pre-defined observation about reality.

Statistics are the results of data analysis. They usually come in the form of a table or chart. This is what a statistical table looks like:

Table 1206. Adult Attendance at Sports Events by Frequency: 2007

Source: Statistical Abstract of the United States (-2012) ; for 2013-, access via ProQuest -- tables can be downloaded as pdfs or to excel)

  • Datasets
  • Machine-readable data files, data files for statistical software programs

If you want to dig into a phenomenon, you want data. Data can be analyzed and interpreted using statistical procedures to answer “why” or “how.” Data is used to create new information and knowledge.

Raw data is the direct result of research that was conducted as part of a study or survey. It is a primary source. It usually comes in the form of a digital data set that can be analyzed using software such as Excel, SPSSSAS, and so on. This is what a data set looks like:

Dataset example: each cell in the spreadsheet represents an individual response to survey questions