File Formats Explained
Dataset files in the archive are available in file formats that are intended to facilitate user data analysis and ensure preservation. File formats found in Roper Center studies are described below. File formats can also be migrated through the use of tools like StatsTransfer.
Many Roper Center datasets from the 20th century are available as ASCII files. ASCII is a widely used preservation format, and fifty-year-old ASCII files can still easily be read by text editors. However, ASCII files must be converted to modern formats to be utilized by researchers. Roper Center offers guides on converting ASCII to Stata or ASCII to SPSS. Roper Center’s data team is also able to assist researchers with a limited number of conversions. For large numbers of conversions, research service fees apply.
The earliest data file format found in the Roper Center collection, column binary was the standard data format for survey research for many years. Column binary files require substantial time and effort to convert to modern format. Roper Center is working diligently to convert all our historical studies out of column binary format. If you require a study to be converted, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. For large numbers of conversions, research service fees apply.