In collaboration with journalists from The New York Times, we’ve developed a dataset that provides an in-depth exploration of economic diversity at highly selective institutions. Users can interact with the dataset through the dashboard below to explore the enrollment distribution by income group at specific institutions, compare them with others, or benchmark against averages from our defined selectivity tiers. Users will also be able to explore how the undergraduate Pell shares at these institutions have changed over time and compare them across schools.

How to use this dashboard

  • Click the name of an institution to investigate the income distribution of its entering students and share of undergraduate Pell recipients over time.
  • To investigate multiple institutions simultaneously, hold down the “ctrl” key and select two or more colleges and universities.
  • Click one of the four Selectivity categories to highlight the institutions in that grouping.

Additional resources from Ithaka S+R

Better Than We Thought: Comparing Publicly Available Data on College Students’ Income Distribution examines the accuracy of the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) on the income distribution of entering college students by comparing it with other public sources of socioeconomic information.

Comparing Public Institution-Level Data on Students’ Family Income and Financial Aid delves into the comparison of IPEDS data and Opportunity Insights data on student income distributions at the institutional level, assessing the allocation of financial aid in relation to student financial backgrounds.

Parental Income, State Funding, and Access to Higher Education explores the relationship between parental income and relative attendance rates at the 12 Ivy-Plus schools as well as the other 127 colleges and univerisities in the Opportunity Insights dataset.

Notes on the data

Enrollment distributions by income group include the number of full-time, first-time degree/certificate-seeking undergraduates paying the in-state tuition rate (public institutions only) who were awarded title IV federal student aid, for each specified income group. Students who did not receive Title IV aid, or in the case of public institutions, are paying the out-of-state tuition rate, are assumed to belong to the “$110,001 and above” income group. Non-resident aliens are not eligible to receive Title IV aid, and are therefore classified separately.

Title IV federal student aid includes federal grants or federal student loans.

All data is publicly available and accessible through the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) collected and published by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Income distribution visualizations use the most recent year of data available through IPEDS, the 2020-21 school year.

The dataset includes any Title IV-granting, non-military institution that was rated in the top four Barron’s selectivity categories (Most Competitive, Highly Competitive +, Highly Competitive, Very Competitive +) in either 2009 or 2016.

In addition the dataset includes any state flagship that was not in the top four Barron’s categories. We use the highest Barrons rating if the 2009 and 2016 rating are different.
In the dataset, we’ve assigned these state flagships to a combined Barrons category, “Very Competitive + and below,” which also includes those institution in the “Very Competitive +” category.

Questions about the dashboard? Contact us!