One of the most exciting conferences in the realm of education data is the NCES STATS-DC Data Conference. If your interests and work involve education statistics, this is a great opportunity for learning and networking. STATS-DC typically attracts 800 to 900 attendees, and there are multiple simultaneous sessions.
What is STATS-DC?
The annual STATS-DC conference is sponsored by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the statistical agency of the U.S. Department of Education. “STATS-DC” is not an acronym, but a shortening of the word statistics, plus a mention of Washington, D.C., where the conference takes place. This year’s theme is “Providing Evidence to Drive Education.” The 2019 conference will be held during three consecutive days in late July.
One important feature of STATS-DC is that U.S. Department of Education offices provide updates and training on federal policies and activities that affect data collection and reporting. Another highlight is presentations by state and local education agency personnel who work directly with data collection and reporting, as well as by experts from other organizations who share strategies and ideas involving education statistics. Finally, because the conference draws participants and presenters from diverse locations—including a variety of specialists in education and data—it offers great networking opportunities.
Twelve kinds of presentation topics
Many presentations occur simultaneously at STATS-DC—typically 10 presentations at once in 10 rooms. To decide which you are interested in attending, refer to the 2019 Agenda at a Glance, available on the IES conference web page (also provided on paper in the conference registration packet). The Agenda at a Glance color-codes presentations by topic. There are 12 topics, and each presentation is assigned to one of them, based on its content:
CCD (Common Core of Data)
Data Linking Beyond K-12
Data Use (Analytical)
Data Use (Instructional)
SLDS (Statewide Longitudinal Data System Grant Program)
To decide which presentations you would like to attend, you may also read abstracts. Abstracts offer more detailed information about each presentation than is available in the Agenda at a Glance and are available on the Agenda tab of the NCES STATS-DC web page. The Agenda will not be included on paper in the registration packet. However, it will posted online in a PDF format and in a mobile app (coming soon), and complimentary Wi-Fi will be available to conference participants in the meeting space.
Making plans to attend STATS-DC
QIP staff will be attending STATS-DC this year, as we have every year for many years. We are currently preparing for the event as described in our blog post about how to maximize the benefits of a professional conference. If you are a member of the education statistics community, are interested in learning more about education data, or are attending for another reason, we look forward to seeing you there.
To access details about the event, visit the NCES web page on 2019 STATS-DC. If you are unable to attend STATS-DC in 2019 but are interested in attending in a future year, check for updates about future conferences on the IES web page on conferences, workshop/training, and technical assistance.