A nationally representative sample of eighth-graders were first surveyed in the spring of 1988. A sample of these respondents were then resurveyed through four follow-ups in 1990, 1992, 1994, and 2000. To further enrich the data, students’ teachers, parents, and school administrators were also surveyed. Coursework and grades from students’ high school and post-secondary transcripts are also available in the restricted use dataset – although some composite variables have been made available in the public use file.
The NELS:88 data can be used for policy-relevant research about educational processes and outcomes, for example: student learning; early and late predictors of dropping out; and school effects on students’ access to programs and equal opportunity to learn.
Name of data set
National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988 (NELS:88)
|Method||computer assisted survey, CATI, CAPI|
|Universe||8th-grade students in the United States in 1998, with follow-up interviews through 2001|
|Notes||Individual-level data not available; need to use DAS system (http://nces.ed.gov/dasolv2/tables/index.asp)|