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Social Sciences Data: ICPSR and More

This guide provides information about locating datasets for use in the social sciences (with a bit about data in the humanities and big data in STEM fields). It also has resources on using datasets (including in teaching) and associated issues.

Fall 2021 Update: New and/or Helpful WSU Libraries Resources and Services

Check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

  • We bumped up our abstract and indexing subscription for Philosopher’s Index to a subscription that includes full-text content for the next year (2021-2022)

Temporary Access, Summer 2021 and following

  • JSTOR  - we have access to ALL their journal content (they divide it into specific collections, and we don’t subscribe to all of them), and the ArtStor database through the end of June *2022*.
  • We will be continuing our Roper Center (survey data iPoll database plus more) access through 3/31/2022. Probably not after, however. Note: If you create an account, please carefully read the  Terms and Conditions (which you should  always do, of course)!
  • We have access to PolicyMap through the end of [updated!] December of 2021. (They have a new version with extra functionality but to download data you have to use the legacy (default) version) - blog at Mapchats Blog | PolicyMap to provide some use cases, etc. 
  • What is PolicyMap?

An online (no software installation needed) U.S. national data and mapping tool and analytics platform with multidisciplinary applications for college students and faculty.  Undergraduate and graduate schools use us in their curriculum and research related to social sciences, urban studies, real estate and housing analysis, community and economic development, public administration, public health, policy and political science, education, business, economics, statistics, and geography, among others. Users can leverage thousands of U.S. data indicators in PolicyMap to perform demographic and socioeconomic analysis, from a neighborhood census block group in many cases, up to a national level, as well as create custom regions, for their research and studies.  
 Look for Blog Posts, Customer Stories, and sample Maps, Tables, and Reports.

  • Our MapChats Blog features stories on Mapping Consumer Spending Habits, Internet Access Disparities, and the Social Drivers of Health and more!
  • Our Academic Web Page gives insight into how other universities and colleges use our data and mapping tool
  • Visit PolicyMap Support for tutorials, training videos, the training calendar.
  • A complete list of our data related to Demographics, Incomes and Spending, Housing, Lending, Quality of Life, Economy, Education and Health can be found here

Update 2: ICPSR Access Tips

Quick Tips 

Having trouble downloading data or accessing other ICPSR resources? Try these things first (instructions below):
  • Open a new private or "incognito" browser window and copy/paste this address into the search bar: Retry your login. 
  • Reset your password
  • Connect to your institution's VPN, if available

Resetting Your Password

Just need a quick password reset? Visit the Password Reset Request page, or email ICPSR Web Support at


Email Validation 

Typically, ICPSR will automatically recognize your institution and validate your account. If you're trying to download data and receive an unexpected alert that you're not from a member institution, even though you are, your account may need to be validated. We can update this manually.

To request a validation, send an email to Include your name, your institutional email address, and the name of your institution. 


Does your institution use a VPN (Virtual Private Network internet connection)? Each VPN is configured differently, but for most institutions, you can use your VPN to access your ICPSR account.
  1. Log into your VPN using the instructions provided by your institution 
  2. Open a browser window and navigate to
  3. Click "log in" on the top right
Your library or IT team may have additional information available, please contact them for VPN assistance. 

Proxy Servers

Please note that we do not recommend using a proxy server, as it can produce issues including incomplete search results and significantly slower downloading times. However, we understand that proxy servers are sometimes necessary. As proxy information is configured at the institutional level, unfortunately the ICPSR team is unable to help with troubleshooting.

If you are at an institution using a proxy server, we suggest the following steps:
  1. Authenticate via your proxy server
  2. Open a new browser tab
  3. Copy/paste the following URL:

Are you in charge of setting up the proxy server at your institution? Please take a look at the following resources Are you at a member institution? Your library or department may have additional information, please contact them for proxy assistance. 

Other FAQs

More help is available! Take a look at our frequently asked questions page for, "What do I do if I'm having trouble logging in with my MyData Account? What about changing my email address or password?"

Additional support is available, visit Get Help with Data.

Still on campus? Sign in now for future remote access

Log in to ICPSR for continuing remote access
Take a moment now to sign into your MyData account. This will validate you for six months of ICPSR data and resources just in case things change. Visit and click "log in" at the top right.

Support From Your Institution

Are you at a member institution? Find your institution on the ICPSR Membership List. Your Official and/or Designated Representative are a great place to get support! You might also find libguides at your Library and other on-demand resources available directly from your institution.

We're Here To Help

Please feel free to contact for any questions or ideas.

Other WSU Libraries Guides of Interest

Public Opinion/Polling Data

About this Guide...

Announcements from ICPSR: - Includes new/updated studies and more.

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