In my first data story I wrote about how different data collection agencies calculate the graduation rates of certain colleges. Specifically I focused on The National Student Clearinghouse and Third Way. Because the story was about the graduation rates I actually didn’t have to verify the graduation rates of schools or states.
The data I did have to verify were the numbers I used to calculate……. I had to verify numbers like the total student population of schools, the percent of students who were undergraduate, and other volumetrics relating to those colleges in the study. These numbers were used to gain a better understanding of the colleges and students in the data story.
The way that most of my data was verified was actually a fairly simple process. I visited the web pages of the colleges in question and searched for the relevant data. One of the easiest was U of M – Ann Arbor, which had many data points right in their admissions site.