The departments of the Institute have different thematic orientations and are divided into separate working units.
Department 1 contains the working units Competencies, Learning Environments and School Education, Personality, and Early Education and has a psychological and pedagogical research perspective. The department is led by Prof. Dr. Ilka Wolter.
Department 2 includes the working units Educational Decisions and Social Inequality, Migration, Returns to Education, as well as Structures and Systems and has a sociological and economic research perspective. The department is led by Prof. Dr. Corinna Kleinert.
Department 3 is home to the Research Data Centre (RDC). Further working units include Educational Measurement, Statistical Survey Methods, as well as Software Development. The department is led by Prof. Dr. Christian Aßmann.
The Center for Study Management (ZSM) consists of five working units: Survey Administration and Controlling, Survey Coordination, Study Communications, Data Protection in Surveys and Survey Technology. The department is led by Dr. Jutta von Maurice.