CIP Project

April 3, 2022

The second batch of IPEDS data has been released: Medical/Health Humanities completions during 2020-2021. A total of 14 institutions have awarded degrees or certificates using our CIP code. Your institution may have already made the switch, but at least one degree or certificate completion is necessary to begin showing up in the public info page for your institution for the year. If you are uncertain whether your university has made the change, please talk to your responsible institutional office in Academic Affairs. You can check the data for your institution and your degree or certificate programs in College Navigator.

Over the past three years, the number of programs using code 51.3204 and the number of total student completions have both increased.

NEW Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • What are the advantages to your program of using code 51.3204  “Medical/Health Humanities” in IPEDS (a federal database of postsecondary and professional program statistics)?
    • If your program offers an Undergraduate or Postgraduate Certificate and/or a Bachelor, Associate, Master, or Doctoral degree, data about your program will be available for free on the open-access College Navigator platform used by prospective students, administrators, boards, and financial aid bodies.
    • Your program will be visible to students searching for Health Professions programs (this is guaranteed by the first two digits, 51).
    • Your program will be visible to health professions students and applicants who are looking for health humanities and interdisciplinary options at your institution.
    • You can compare your program data with those of other institutions.
    • The location of 51.3204 in the “Health Professions” (section “51”) of the database is advantageous in showing your program to be relevant to STEM, which could open up funding and resource opportunities for STEM programs at your institution while completely preserving your program’s humanities (and arts and social science) interdisciplinary methods and mission – all designated by the 4-digit portion after the decimal, i.e., “.3204. Your program does not need to include any clinical or science components to use this code, but it may.
  • What are the advantages to the field?
    • Institutions can pool data sets to document the nationwide growth and sustainability of Medical/Health Humanities programming from certificate to doctoral level. The more institutions use the code, the greater the value of the data.
    • The more data collected by all institutions who graduate Medical/Health Humanities students, the more benefit to individual institutions in making cases for funding, staffing, resources, and student support.
  • What data are collected by IPEDS?
    • Demographic info for students; enrollment; completion (at 1x and 2x the program duration); staffing; program/institutional resources; financial aid; selected student financial status data (number of Pell grant recipients, for ex.); earnings post-graduation (via IRS data).
  • Can I find out what jobs graduates go into?
    • Not quite yet but within a few years, it will be possible to track the employment numbers and identify where certificate and degree completers go (into which sectors of the economy) by linking IPEDS data with Bureau of Labor Statistics data. It is already possible (with the help of an institutional research officer) to identify patterns in which graduates go into additional academic programming.
  • What degrees and certificates can I report using the CIP code?
    • In addition to undergraduate certificates, bachelor degrees (majors), masters, doctoral, and graduate certificate students, programs may also report data for minor completions, if desired, for institutional research purposes. However, minors do not appear in public-facing IPEDS reports.
  • Who uses IPEDS data and CIP codes?
    • Administrators, advisory boards, and funders to allocate campus resources and student aid.
    • Prospective students, applicants, parents, counselors.
    • The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) uses the data to track and support job growth and employment needs. BLS calculates that healthcare occupations will grow 16% by 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 2.6 million new jobs (
  • What happens if we are using a different CIP code?
    • Your enrollment and degree completion demographics are either being combined with another program’s data or assigned a “miscellaneous” code that doesn’t fully describe your program specifically as medical or health humanities. For example, “30.00” is “Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies, General.”
  • Who assigns CIP Codes?
    • Institutions decide which CIP codes they will use, not NCES, the federal agency in which IPEDS is housed. It does not matter if your program is titled “Medical/Health Humanities” or some piece of that combo or any other name that does not include any of those words in order to choose to use 51.3204. Program leaders and academic affairs staff make this decision based on the content of the program and its relation to the field. The broad, non-exclusionary/non-exhaustive definition of Medical/Health Humanities is here.)

Questions, small or large? Contact Sarah Berry, Ph.D. at