CIP Project

CIP Code Update: Between January and March 2018, an IES representative will send out a “Call for Comments” to your institution’s IPEDS Keyholder or Coordinator (typically, this is your Registrar or Institutional Research Officer), in which they can suggest a new CIP code for Medical Humanities and Health Humanities. I am recommending that we each act individually at our institutions this fall to prepare for this opportunity in early 2018:

  • Contact your Keyholder or Coordinator now or soon, let them know about the CIP 2020 update process slated to begin in the first quarter of 2018, and ask them if they will work with you to request a new, unique CIP code for Medical and Health Humanities.

Anyone can make a suggestion for a new CIP code, including baccalaureate, graduate, and professional schools. Degree-granting programs (BA, BS, and certificate) have a direct stake in securing a dedicated code, but all programs can make the suggestion at our individual institutions and hopefully gain a critical mass for consideration. If your program is a minor with the possibility of expanding to a major, having a CIP code for Health and Medical Humanities will be very valuable for institutional planning. I’ll provide more guidance as I learn more during the Call for Comments phase of the update process. In the meantime, contact me, Sarah Berry, ( with questions.


Health Humanities Consortium is working on securing a CIP (Classification of Institutional Programs) code for Medical Humanities/Health Humanities. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) uses CIP codes to collect data on enrollment and graduation for degree programs in higher ed and graduate education in its IPEDS database, and these data are used by many administrators and funding bodies in year-to-year management of academic programming. The process for requesting new CIP codes is anticipated to be approved this summer; the first step in past updates is that NCES does some preliminary research on new and unique degree programs in the US.
If you are a chair/member of a bachelor, master, certificate, or doctoral degree-granting program in Medical Humanities or Health Humanities and would like to participate in this effort, please email Sarah Berry at Please note that data for minors are not collected by NCES, but if you run a minor and anticipate developing a major at any point in the future, your participation would be very useful, so please email me. Two steps to take now are: 1) to communicate with your institution’s Keyholder or Coordinator (frequently the Registrar or Institutional Research Officer) and let them know that we are planning this initiative; the Keyholder or Coordinator may be contacted by NCES before program chairs. 2) Find out how what CIP code for your Medical Humanities or Health Humanities degree program(s) is currently being used by your institution.
When NCES announces the beginning of the process I will follow up with participants. At this time, we anticipate that it will be useful to pool some of our shareable program data to make a case to NCES—more details to come in summer 2017.