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AIR Statement of Ethical Principles

The Association for Institutional Research affirms the following overarching principles regarding the use of data to facilitate insights and improve decision making. These principles guide us as we promote the use of data, analytics, information, and evidence to improve higher education.


We Act with Integrity

We recognize the consequences of our work. The analytic algorithms and applications we build and/or implement, as well as the policy decisions incorporating information we analyze and disseminate, impact people and situations.

We acknowledge that the individuals whose information we use have rights, derived from both legal and ethical principles that can cross national borders. We make intentional efforts to protect their information from misuse or use that could cause them harm.

We protect privacy and maintain confidentiality when collecting, compiling, analyzing, and disseminating information.

We act as responsible data stewards. We secure the data and information over which we have control, following generally accepted guidelines and professional standards for physical and electronic security and data sharing.

We provide accurate and contextualized information. We do not knowingly or intentionally mislead the consumers of our information.

We deliver information and analyses appropriate to the questions being asked, to the quality of the data available, and to the context in which the questions are asked.

We seek to be fair and transparent, minimizing our own personal biases in our research assumptions, methodologies, and conclusions.

We avoid conflicts of interest, and disclose them when unavoidable, particularly with third parties and vendors. We act in the best interests of our institutions, students, and stakeholders.

We strive to make our work accessible to those who need data, information, and analysis to generate insight and make decisions.

We share knowledge of the Institutional Research field and its application so we may facilitate insights and promote common understanding to our institutions and stakeholders.

We value lifelong learning and the enhancement of our field. We draw on and contribute to relevant and emerging scholarship and educate ourselves on developing trends. We utilize those methods and techniques for which we have, or can obtain, appropriate knowledge and capabilities.


We recognize that technological advancements have and will continue to impact our work. We remain committed to serving as educators and role models on the ethical use of data to benefit students and institutions and to improve higher education.

For more information, visit the Association for Institutional Research webpage, email AIR, or call at (850) 385-4155.