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Creating statistically literate global citizens: The use of IPUMS-International integrated census microdata in teaching

Publication Abstract

Meier, A., R. McCaa, and David Lam. 2011. "Creating statistically literate global citizens: The use of IPUMS-International integrated census microdata in teaching." Statistical Journal of the IAOS, 27(3): 145-156.

Census microdata are ideal for developing statistical literacy of university students. Access, particularly to internationally comparable microdata, has been a significant obstacle. The IPUMS-International project offers a uniform solution to providing access for policy analysts, researchers, and students to integrated microdata and metadata, while protecting statistical confidentiality. Eighty-five official statistical agencies have endorsed IPUMS-I dissemination principles and entrusted microdata for 249 censuses to the project. From June 2010, 159 integrated samples, representing 55 countries and totaling over 325 million person records, are available at no cost to researchers and their students. The database is being expanded with the addition of samples for 5–10 countries per year as well as samples for the 2010 round of censuses. This paper illustrates two approaches to using IPUMS-I census microdata in the university curriculum to promote statistical literacy among undergraduates.

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