Skip Navigation
small NCES header image
Illustration/Logo View Quarterly by  This Issue  |  Volume and Issue  |  Topics
Education Statistics Quarterly
Vol 4, Issue 1, Topic: Postsecondary Education
Postsecondary Institutions in the United States: Fall 2000 and Degrees and Other Awards Conferred: 1999–2000
By: Laura G. Knapp, Janice E. Kelly, Roy W. Whitmore, Shiying Wu, Lorraine M. Gallego, and Eric Grau
 
This article was originally published as the Summary of the E.D. Tabs report of the same name. The universe data are from the NCES Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).
 
 

Introduction

This report presents findings from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). These data, collected in fall 2000, were the first to be collected through the IPEDS Web-based data collection system.

IPEDS collects data from about 9,400 postsecondary institutions in the United States (the 50 states and the District of Columbia) and its outlying areas.1 For IPEDS, a postsecondary institution is defined as an organization that is open to the public and has as its primary mission the provision of postsecondary education. IPEDS defines postsecondary education as formal instructional programs with a curriculum designed primarily for students who are beyond the compulsory age for high school. This includes academic, vocational, and continuing professional education programs and excludes institutions that offer only avocational (leisure) and adult basic education programs.

Participation in IPEDS was a requirement for the approximately 6,600 institutions that participated in Title IV federal student financial aid programs such as Pell Grants or Stafford Loans during the 2000–01 academic year.2 In addition, institutions that do not participate in Title IV programs are offered the opportunity to participate in the IPEDS data collection process. About 30 percent of the IPEDS institutions located within the 50 states and the District of Columbia (2,711 institutions) did not participate in Title IV programs during the 2000–01 academic year and are thus not the main focus of this report. Since IPEDS does not identify all postsecondary institutions, the U.S. Department of Education currently has plans to conduct an extensive nationwide search to identify postsecondary institutions that are not currently included in the IPEDS database. The project also includes plans to collect a limited amount of information from both those formerly identified and the newly identified non–Title IV institutions.

Tabulations in this report present data collected from the approximately 6,600 Title IV postsecondary institutions regarding both institutional characteristics for the 2000–01 academic year and completions (degrees and other formal awards conferred) during the 1999–2000 academic year (July 1, 1999, through June 30, 2000). This report presents institutional characteristics data for all Title IV postsecondary institutions and completions data for those Title IV institutions that granted degrees and were located within the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

back to top


Institutional Characteristics Information

NCES and other researchers use data from the IPEDS “Institutional Characteristics Survey” to classify postsecondary institutions based on a variety of characteristics. Data on sector, level, control, and affiliation allow classification within general categories. More specific categories of institutions can be defined by using additional data, such as types of programs offered, levels of degrees and awards, accreditation, calendar system, admission requirements, student charges, and basic enrollment information. Basic directory information also is provided.

Table A provides counts of institutions by several of these identifying and classifying characteristics. Institutions were divided geographically by their presence within the 50 states and the District of Columbia or in an outlying area. About 98 percent of Title IV postsecondary institutions (6,479 institutions) were located within the 50 states and the District of Columbia in the fall of 2000, and the remaining 2 percent (157 institutions) were located in the outlying areas.

Institutions were further classified by their degree-granting status. Institutions were considered degree granting if they awarded at least one associate’s or higher degree in academic year 1999–2000. About 65 percent of Title IV postsecondary institutions in the 50 states and the District of Columbia (4,182 institutions) and just over half of Title IV postsecondary institutions in the outlying areas (83 institutions) granted a degree during this period (table A).


Table A.—Number of Title IV postsecondary institutions, by control and level of institution: 50 states, District of Columbia, and the outlying areas, academic year 2000–01
Level of institution
Total Public Private not-for-profit Private for-profit
All institutions
6,636 2,117 1,996 2,523
    4 years and above
2,543 642 1,613 288
    At least 2 but less than 4 years
2,328 1,212 290 826
    Less than 2 years
1,765 263 93 1,409
 
50 states and DC
6,479 2,084 1,950 2,445
    4 years and above
2,489 626 1,578 285
    At least 2 but less than 4 years
2,296 1,197 288 811
    Less than 2 years
1,694 261 84 1,349
 
Outlying areas
157 33 46 78
    4 years and above
54 16 35 3
    At least 2 but less than 4 years
32 15 2 15
    Less than 2 years
71 2 9 60
 
Degree-granting
4,265 1,729 1,732 804
    4 years and above
2,504 638 1,586 280
    At least 2 but less than 4 years
1,761 1,091 146 524
    Less than 2 years
0 0 0 0
 
50 states and DC
4,182 1,698 1,695 789
    4 years and above
2,450 622 1,551 277
    At least 2 but less than 4 years
1,732 1,076 144 512
    Less than 2 years
0 0 0 0
 
Outlying areas
83 31 37 15
    4 years and above
54 16 35 3
    At least 2 but less than 4 years
29 15 2 12
    Less than 2 years
0 0 0 0

NOTE: The outlying areas are American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, the Marshall Islands, the Northern Marianas, Palau, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Fall 2000.

back to top


Completions Information

During the 1999–2000 academic year, almost 2.4 million degrees were awarded by Title IV degree-granting institutions located in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Of the total number of degrees awarded, 24 percent were associate’s degrees, 52 percent were bachelor’s degrees, 19 percent were master’s degrees, 2 percent were doctor’s degrees, and 3 percent were first-professional degrees3 (table B).

Control of institutions

Public institutions awarded two-thirds (66 percent) of all degrees during the 1999–2000 academic year, while private not-for-profit institutions awarded 30 percent and private for-profit institutions awarded 4 percent of all degrees (table C). Public and private not-for-profit institutions were more likely to award bachelor’s degrees than any other type of degree. Bachelor’s degrees accounted for 52 percent of all degrees awarded by public institutions and 57 percent of all degrees awarded by private not-for-profit institutions during 1999–2000 (table B). Private for-profit institutions, on the other hand, were more likely to award associate’s degrees. Associate’s degrees accounted for 69 percent of the degrees awarded by private for-profit institutions during the 1999–2000 academic year.

Public institutions awarded the majority of degrees at all degree levels, except at the first-professional level. They awarded 79 percent of associate’s degrees, 66 percent of bachelor’s degrees, 53 percent of master’s degrees, and 63 percent of doctor’s degrees (table C). The majority of first-professional degrees (59 percent) were awarded by private not-for-profit institutions, while public institutions awarded 41 percent of the degrees at this level.


Table B.—Number and percent of degrees conferred by Title IV degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by control of institution and level of degree: 50 states and District of Columbia, academic year 1999–2000
Level of degree
Total Public Private not-for-profit Private for-profit
Total, all degrees
2,384,163 1,563,113 719,421 101,629
    Percent of total
100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0
Associate’s degrees
564,933 448,446 46,337 70,150
    Percent of total
23.7 28.7 6.4 69.0
Bachelor’s degrees
1,237,875 810,855 406,958 20,062
    Percent of total
51.9 51.9 56.6 19.7
Master’s degrees
457,056 243,157 203,591 10,308
    Percent of total
19.2 15.6 28.3 10.1
Doctor’s degrees
44,808 28,408 15,800 600
    Percent of total
1.9 1.8 2.2 0.6
First-professional degrees*
79,491 32,247 46,735 509
    Percent of total
3.3 2.1 6.5 0.5

*First-professional degrees are awarded after completion of the academic requirements to begin practice in the following professions: chiropractic (D.C. or D.C.M.); dentistry (D.D.S. or D.M.D.); law (L.L.B. or J.D.); medicine (M.D.); optometry (O.D.); osteopathic medicine (D.O.); pharmacy (Pharm.D.); podiatry (D.P.M., D.P., or Pod.D.); theology (M.Div., M.H.L., B.D. , or Ordination); or veterinary medicine (D.V.M.).

NOTE: Detail may not add to totals because of rounding.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Fall 2000.


Gender and race/ethnicity of recipients

Overall, women earned more degrees than men. About 57 percent of all degrees awarded in academic year 1999–2000 went to women (table C). Considering degrees by level, women earned more associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees than men in 1999–2000. Women earned 60 percent of the associate’s degrees, 57 percent of the bachelor’s degrees, and 58 percent of the master’s degrees. On the other hand, men earned 56 percent of the doctor’s degrees and 55 percent of the first-professional degrees.

Over two-thirds (70 percent) of all degrees conferred during the 1999–2000 academic year were awarded to White students, 21 percent were awarded to minority students, and 9 percent were awarded to nonresident aliens or individuals whose race/ethnicity was unknown. The majority of degrees at each level were awarded to White students: 70 percent of associate’s degrees, 72 percent of bachelor’s degrees, 66 percent of master’s degrees, 59 percent of doctor’s degrees, and 72 percent of first-professional degrees.

The proportion of degrees awarded to minority students was highest at the associate’s level. Minorities received 25 percent of associate’s degrees. They were also awarded 21 percent of bachelor’s degrees, 16 percent of master’s degrees, 13 percent of doctor’s degrees, and 22 percent of first-professional degrees. This general decline by level was even greater when the awards to Asian/Pacific Islanders were excluded from the minority count. Blacks, Hispanics, and American Indians/Alaska Natives received 20 percent of all associate’s degrees, 15 percent of all bachelor’s degrees, 12 percent of all master’s and all first-professional degrees, and 8 percent of all doctor’s degrees.

The proportion of degrees awarded to nonresident aliens varied by level. Nonresident aliens received less than 5 percent of associate’s, bachelor’s, or first-professional degrees; however, they received 12 percent of all master’s degrees and 24 percent of all doctor’s degrees.


Table C.—Number and percent of degrees conferred by Title IV degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by level of degree, control of institution, gender, and race/ethnicity of recipient: 50 states and District of Columbia, academic year 1999–2000
  Total degrees Associate’s degrees Bachelor’s degrees
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
All institutions
2,384,163 100.0 564,933 100.0 1,237,875 100.0
 
Control of institution
    Public
1,563,113 65.6 448,446 79.4 810,855 65.5
    Private not-for-profit
719,421 30.2 46,337 8.2 406,958 32.9
    Private for-profit
101,629 4.3 70,150 12.4 20,062 1.6
 
Gender of recipient
    Men
1,015,853 42.6 224,721 39.8 530,367 42.8
    Women
1,368,310 57.4 340,212 60.2 707,508 57.2
 
Race/ethnicity of recipient
    White, non-Hispanic
1,676,041 70.3 396,127 70.1 896,485 72.4
    Black, non-Hispanic
203,560 8.5 58,347 10.3 104,158 8.4
    Hispanic
145,114 6.1 49,945 8.8 72,290 5.8
    Asian/Pacific Islander
134,085 5.6 26,890 4.8 75,050 6.1
    American Indian/Alaska Native
17,497 0.7 6,282 1.1 8,413 0.7
    Race/ethnicity unknown
90,047 3.8 17,254 3.1 42,413 3.4
    Nonresident alien
117,819 4.9 10,088 1.8 39,066 3.2
  Master’s degrees Doctor’s degrees First-professional degrees*
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
All institutions
457,056 100.0 44,808 100.0 79,491 100.0
 
Control of institution
    Public
243,157 53.2 28,408 63.4 32,247 40.6
    Private not-for-profit
203,591 44.5 15,800 35.3 46,735 58.8
    Private for-profit
10,308 2.3 600 1.3 509 0.6
 
Gender of recipient
    Men
191,792 42.0 25,028 55.9 43,945 55.3
    Women
265,264 58.0 19,780 44.1 35,546 44.7
 
Race/ethnicity of recipient
    White, non-Hispanic
299,732 65.6 26,471 59.1 57,226 72.0
    Black, non-Hispanic
33,566 7.3 2,147 4.8 5,342 6.7
    Hispanic
17,986 3.9 1,243 2.8 3,650 4.6
    Asian/Pacific Islander
21,642 4.7 2,297 5.1 8,206 10.3
    American Indian/Alaska Native
2,106 0.5 155 0.3 541 0.7
    Race/ethnicity unknown
26,044 5.7 1,661 3.7 2,675 3.4
    Nonresident alien
55,980 12.2 10,834 24.2 1,851 2.3

*First-professional degrees are awarded after completion of the academic requirements to begin practice in the following professions: chiropractic (D.C. or D.C.M.); dentistry (D.D.S. or D.M.D.); law (L.L.B. or J.D.); medicine (M.D.); optometry (O.D.); osteopathic medicine (D.O.); pharmacy (Pharm.D.); podiatry (D.P.M., D.P., or Pod.D.); theology (M.Div., M.H.L., B.D., or Ordination); or veterinary medicine (D.V.M.).

NOTE: Detail may not add to totals because of rounding.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Fall 2000.


Degree fields

When considering degrees awarded by field of study, 21 percent of all bachelor’s degrees conferred during 1999–2000 were in the field of business management and administrative services (table D). The social sciences and history program area accounted for 10 percent of all bachelor’s degrees, and education accounted for 9 percent.4

Business management and administrative services and education were popular fields of study at the master’s level, together accounting for over half of all master’s degrees conferred in 1999–2000. Twenty-four percent of master’s degrees were in the field of business management and administrative services, while 27 percent of master’s degrees were in the field of education. Health professions and related sciences accounted for 9 percent of awards at this level.

Six fields of study accounted for two-thirds of all doctor’s degrees awarded in 1999–2000: 15 percent of the doctor’s degrees were awarded in education, 12 percent in engineering, 11 percent in biological sciences/life sciences, 10 percent in psychology, 9 percent in social sciences and history, and 9 percent in physical sciences.


Table D.—Number and percent of associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctor’s degrees conferred by Title IV degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by level of degree for selected fields: 50 states and District of Columbia, academic year 1999–2000
Field of study*
Associate’s degrees Bachelor’s degrees Master’s degrees Doctor’s degrees
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
Number Percent
of total
Total, all fields
564,933 100.0 1,237,875 100.0 457,056 100.0 44,808 100.0
 
Biological sciences/life
sciences
1,434 0.3 63,532 5.1 6,198 1.4 4,867 10.9
Business management and
administrative services
92,274 16.3 253,162 20.5 111,664 24.4 1,193 2.7
Education
8,226 1.5 108,168 8.7 124,240 27.2 6,830 15.2
Engineering
1,752 0.3 58,427 4.7 25,596 5.6 5,384 12.0
Health professions and
related sciences
84,081 14.9 78,458 6.3 42,456 9.3 2,676 6.0
Physical sciences
1,350 0.2 18,213 1.5 4,823 1.1 4,016 9.0
Psychology
1,455 0.3 74,060 6.0 14,465 3.2 4,310 9.6
Social sciences and history
5,136 0.9 127,101 10.3 14,066 3.1 4,095 9.1
All other fields
369,225 65.4 456,754 36.9 113,548 24.8 11,437 25.5

*Degrees by field of study (2-digit CIP level) are based on the 1990 version of the Classification of Instructional Programs.

NOTE: Detail may not add to totals because of rounding.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Fall 2000.

back to top


Footnotes

1The outlying areas are American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, the Marshall Islands, the Northern Marianas, Palau, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

2Institutions participating in Title IV programs are accredited by an agency or organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, have a program of over 300 clock hours or 8 credit hours, have been in business for at least 2 years, and have a signed Program Participation Agreement (PPA) with the Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE), U.S. Department of Education.

3First-professional degrees are awarded after completion of the academic requirements to begin practice in the following professions: chiropractic (D.C. or D.C.M.); dentistry (D.D.S. or D.M.D.); law (L.L.B. or J.D.); medicine (M.D.); optometry (O.D.); osteopathic medicine (D.O.); pharmacy (Pharm.D.); podiatry (D.P.M., D.P., or Pod.D.); theology (M.Div., M.H.L., B.D., or Ordination); or veterinary medicine (D.V.M.).

4Degrees by field of study (2-digit CIP level) are based on the 1990 version of the Classification of Instructional Programs.

back to top


Data source: The NCES Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Fall 2000.

For technical information, see the complete report:

Knapp, L.G., Kelly, J.E., Whitmore, R.W., Wu, S., Gallego, L.M., and Grau, E. (2001). Postsecondary Institutions in the United States: Fall 2000 and Degrees and Other Awards Conferred: 1999–2000 (NCES 2002–156).

Author affiliations: L.G. Knapp, consultant; J.E. Kelly, R.W. Whitmore, S. Wu, L.M. Gallego, and E. Grau, Research Triangle Institute.

For questions about content, contact Aurora M. D’Amico (aurora.d’amico@ed.gov).

To obtain the complete report (NCES 2002–156), visit the NCES Web Site (http://nces.ed.gov).

back to top


Would you like to help us improve our products and website by taking a short survey?

YES, I would like to take the survey

or

No Thanks

The survey consists of a few short questions and takes less than one minute to complete.
National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education