Thursday, October 12, 2017

College Completion

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The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) released new data today (Oct. 12) that provide a more comprehensive look at the percentage of degree/certificate-seeking undergraduate students who are successfully completing postsecondary education. Unlike the previously reported graduation rates, the new Outcome Measures (OM) account for non-traditional students, such as those who attend part time or have transferred schools.

For 2016-17, the report shows that, eight years after entering a postsecondary institution, the percentage of students who had completed their degree was 53.6 percent at 4-year schools and 31.6 percent at 2-year schools. (Learn more about Outcome Measures in a new NCES blog post)

The new OM data were released by NCES in a new publication, Graduation Rates for Selected Cohorts, 2008-13; Outcome Measures for Cohort Year 2008; Student Financial Aid, Academic Year 2015-16; and Admissions in Postsecondary Institutions, Fall 2016: First Look (Preliminary Data).
The findings are from the winter data collection of the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and include:
  • About 19 percent of first-time full-time students who enrolled in 2-year institutions in 2012 graduated within two years (100 percent of normal time). However, that rate jumped to 36 percent when the time for graduation was extended to four years (200 percent of normal time);
  • Approximately 60 percent of full-time, first-time students enrolled in 2010 at 4-year institutions who were seeking a bachelor's or equivalent degree completed a bachelor's or equivalent degree within 6 years at the institution where they began their studies;
  • Among full-time, first-time students who enrolled in 2012 at less-than 2-year institutions, 45 percent graduated within 100 percent of the normal time. When that time span was extended to within 200 percent, the graduation rate rose to 70 percent;
  • Among full-time, first-time degree/certificate-seeking undergraduate students awarded any grant aid, differences in average cost of attendance and net price of attendance for the 2015-16 academic year varied by institutional sector. For those attending public 4-year institutions, average cost was approximately $19,600 and net price was about $12,400; for those attending nonprofit 4-year institutions, average cost was roughly $39,500 and net price was about $22,200; and for those attending for-profit 4-year institutions, average cost was approximately $27,900 and net price was about $21,900;
  • Title IV institutions that do not have an open admission policy received approximately 10.4 million applications for fall 2016 admission. About 5.8 million of these applications resulted in admission, and around 1.6 million students enrolled.

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