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Conducting Research in Irving ISD

  • Conducting Research in Irving Independent School District

    Research studies within the district must be conducted using only historical data. No studies requiring data collection or active research will be approved.

    Current IISD Employees: The Performance Outcomes and Data (POD) department is committed to supporting your pursuit of a graduate degree. While there are no exceptions for active research, POD can provide guidance on the development of a research project that meets the requirements of your program.


    Requesting Historical Data for Research Purposes

    Complete the Public Information Request Form to begin the process. 

    For additional guidance and recommendations, see the process below. 


    For other questions or inquiries, please contact Dr. Sarah Stevens (sstevens02@irvingisd.net). 

  • Access to Historical Data

    The fastest and easiest access to historical data is to use data that has already been published for public use.

    The Research Portal provides aggregate assessment data for all Texas students who participated in statewide test administrations and includes a glossary, user guide, and overview video to help users navigate the system. Users can analyze and compare assessment results across multiple administrations and across regions, districts, and campuses. The Research Portal also allows users to generate various reports for each operational assessment program and to analyze the results by different student groups. Generated reports can be downloaded and printed in PDF or .csv format.  

    The Texas Education Research Center  (Texas ERC) – officially designated by the State of Texas. The Texas ERC is a research center and data clearinghouse providing access to longitudinal, student-level data for scientific inquiry and policymaking purposes. Since its inception in 2006, the Texas ERC’s goal has been to bridge the gap between theory and policy by providing a cooperative research environment for study by both scholars and policymakers.

    The Commit Partnership is a collective impact organization composed of hundreds of partners across Dallas County and the state of Texas supported by a dedicated 'backbone' staff of 60+ professionals. The mission of the Commit Data Dashboard is to democratize data to improve decision-making in public schools. There’s no shortage of publicly available data about the state of our schools, coming out of local school boards, state education agencies, and the U.S. Department of Education. Because of our emphasis on local and state policy, we’ve chosen to limit the scope of our data portal to the state of Texas, with options for viewing by school district, county, legislative district, or statewide.

    Looking for data relevant to your education and STEM-related research questions? Turn to the PEERS Hub to discover data that meets your needs wherever they are located worldwide.

    Ed Trust has developed a number of tools to help students, parents, educators, policymakers, and advocates more easily find and use key education data. In certain instances, Ed Trust uses the public data visualization tool, Tableau, where you can investigate a wide range of metrics about higher education, such as enrollment figures, graduation rates, diversity statistics, cost, and other financial data.

    Civil Rights Data Collection Office for Civil Rights: For more than five decades, the Civil Rights Data Collection has captured data on students’ equal access to educational opportunities to understand and inform schools’ compliance with the civil rights laws enforced by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.

    ICPSR is an international consortium of more than 750 academic institutions and research organizations. ICPSR (Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research) provides leadership and training in data access, curation, and methods of analysis for the social science research community. ICPSR maintains a data archive of more than 250,000 files of research in the social and behavioral sciences. It hosts 21 specialized collections of data in education, aging, criminal justice, substance abuse, terrorism, and other fields.

    National Center for Education Statistics is the primary statistical agency of the U.S. Department of Education. It is one of thirteen principal federal statistical agencies whose activities are predominantly focused on the collection, compilation, process, or analysis of information for statistical purposes.

    Texas Education Agency Data Sources:

    Educator Certification and Standards conducts studies about teacher demographics, teacher attrition and retention, teacher shortages, mathematics and science teachers and administrators in Texas.

    Financial information and reports for the Texas Education Agency, and the state's public and charter school districts.

    General data on the state's public and charter school districts and campuses.

    How the state's school districts, charter schools and campuses are doing.

    How students in Texas public schools perform.


    The Public Information Act: The Public Information Act (PIA) provides a mechanism for citizens to inspect or copy government records. The Public Information Request (PIR) process should be used for additional district specific requests that cannot be fulfilled using one of the public sites above.

    Information about the PIR Process:

        • Directs the release of information that is publicly available but does not grant special access to information that is not otherwise public information.
        • Applies to information already in existence.
        • It does not require the preparation of new information.
        • All requests must be treated equally and the purpose of the request cannot be questioned.
        • Exclusions apply.
        • It should be used for requests for data about employees or for aggregate student data.


    The Research Request Process: The district developed a process to promote access to data for evaluating and monitoring educational progress and educational programs while respecting the privacy of students and families and maintaining the confidentiality and security of non-public data sources. This process is only available to those conducting educational research. All requests must first submit a PIR. 

    To determine if a data request requires a Research Agreement as described in the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the district considers multiple factors.

    Examples of Data Sensitivity Levels:

    • Less Sensitive Data
      • Enrollment data
      • Achievement or survey data not connected to subgroups
      • Gender, grade, ethnicity if disclosure does not have small groups or small categories
    • Moderately Sensitive Data
      • Race/Ethnicity, socio-economic status, disability status, emergent bilingual status
      • Achievement, survey or discipline data with moderately sensitive demographic information
    • Highly Sensitive Data
      • Discipline and attendance records
      • Personally identifiable information such as name, birthday, place of birth, names of family members, addresses **NEVER RELEASED**

    Examples of Level of Detail:

    • Low level of detail
      • Summary data
    • Moderate level of detail
      • Individual data de-identified and anonymized to prevent identification
      • Summary data by subgroups
    • High level of detail
      • Individual data that contains personally identifiable information **NEVER RELEASED**

    The Privacy Technical Assistance Center through the USDOE provided additional information on avoiding disclosing personally identifiable information (PII) in violation of FERPA. Data with redacted direct identifiers still contains PII from race, gender, disability status, program participation, etc. that could be used to re-identify specific individuals. This data is still protected by FERPA. Two specific kinds of education studies allow districts to work with researchers using some data otherwise protected by FERPA. Disclosure is permitted to develop, validate, or administer predictive tests or improve instruction.

    Requests for this data require a written agreement and must meet the following conditions:

    • The study will not permit identification of parents and students.
    • The information is destroyed when no longer needed for the purposes for which the study was conducted.
    • The educational agency enters into an agreement that
      • Specifies the purpose, scope, and duration of the study and the information to be disclosed.
      • Requires only the minimum level of information necessary to meet the purpose of the study as stated in the written agreement.
      • Affirms the study will not permit personally identifiable information and all data will be destroyed at the conclusion of the study.
    • The district is not required to participate in any study.

    Additional guidance on FERPA that will be used when evaluating the specific data requested: