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Do you have information on postsecondary enrollment rates?


Enrollment in degree-granting postsecondary institutions increased by 18 percent between 1993 and 2003. Between 2003 and 2013, enrollment increased 20 percent, from 16.9 million to 20.4 million. Much of the growth between 2003 and 2013 was in full-time enrollment; the number of full-time students rose 22 percent, while the number of part-time students rose 18 percent. During the same period, the number of female students rose 19 percent, while the number of male students rose 22 percent. Although male enrollment increased by a larger percentage during this period, the majority (57 percent) of students in 2013 were female. Enrollment increases can be affected both by population growth and by rising rates of enrollment. Between 2003 and 2013, the number of 18- to 24-year-olds in the population increased from 28.9 million to 31.5 million, an increase of 9 percent, and the percentage of 18- to 24-year-olds enrolled in degree-granting postsecondary institutions rose from 38 percent in 2003 to 40 percent in 2013. In addition to enrollment in degree-granting institutions, about 472,000 students attended non-degree-granting, Title IV eligible, postsecondary institutions in fall 2013. These institutions are postsecondary institutions that do not award associate's or higher degrees; they include, for example, institutions that offer only career and technical programs of less than 2 years' duration.

Like enrollment in degree-granting institutions for the United States as a whole, the number of students enrolled in degree-granting institutions located within individual states was generally higher in 2013 than in 2008. Overall, enrollment in degree-granting institutions was 7 percent higher in 2013 than in 2008.

Between 2003 and 2013, the percentage increase in the number of students enrolled in degree-granting institutions was higher for students under age 25 than for older students; however, the rate of increase is expected to be lower for students under age 25 than for older students in the coming years. The enrollment of students under age 25 increased by 22 percent from 2003 to 2013, while the enrollment of those age 25 and over increased by 19 percent. From 2013 to 2024, however, NCES projects the increase for students under age 25 to be 13 percent, compared with 14 percent for students age 25 and over.

Enrollment trends have differed at the undergraduate and postbaccalaureate levels. Undergraduate enrollment increased 47 percent between 1970 and 1983, when it reached 10.8 million. Undergraduate enrollment dipped to 10.6 million in 1984 and 1985, but then increased each year from 1985 to 1992, rising 18 percent before stabilizing between 1992 and 1998. Between 2003 and 2013, undergraduate enrollment rose 21 percent overall, from 14.5 million to 17.5 million; however, undergraduate enrollment in 2013 was lower than in 2010 (18.1 million).

Since 1988, the number of females in postbaccalaureate programs has exceeded the number of males. Between 2003 and 2013, the number of full-time male postbaccalaureate students increased by 24 percent, compared with a 34 percent increase in the number of full-time female postbaccalaureate students. Among part-time postbaccalaureate students, the number of males increased by 6 percent and the number of females increased by 10 percent.

The percentage of American college students who are Hispanic, Asian/Pacific Islander, Black, and American Indian/Alaska Native has been increasing. From 1976 to 2013, the percentage of Hispanic students rose from 4 percent to 16 percent, the percentage of Asian/Pacific Islander students rose from 2 percent to 6 percent, the percentage of Black students rose from 10 percent to 15 percent, and the percentage of American Indian/Alaska Native students rose from 0.7 to 0.8 percent. During the same period, the percentage of White students fell from 84 percent to 59 percent.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2016). Digest of Education Statistics, 2014 (NCES 2016-006), Chapter 3.

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