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NPSAS: Executive Summary Profile of Undergraduates in U.S. Postsecondary Education Institutions: 1999-2000
Who Were 1999-2000 Undergradautes?
Where Are Undergraduates Enrolled and What Do They Study?
Degree Program
Field of Study
Undergraduate Diversity and The Risk of Leaving Postsecondary Education?
Research Methodology
Full Report (PDF)
Executive Summary (PDF)
Degree Program

The patterns of participation in degree programs paralleled the level of institution undergraduates attended. In particular, those who attended either public 2-year institutions or private for-profit vocational institutions tended to be enrolled in either associate’s degree or vocational certificate programs, while those enrolled in 4-year institutions were enrolled almost exclusively in baccalaureate programs.

About 44 percent of undergraduates were in baccalaureate programs, and 38 percent were pursuing associate’s degrees. In addition, 12 percent were working toward a vocational certificate, while 7 percent were not working toward any postsecondary credential.

Older students, who were more concentrated in community colleges, were more likely than their younger counterparts to be working toward an associate’s degree. This was particularly true for students in their thirties, among whom 45 percent were in associate’s degree programs, compared with 33 percent of students ages 19 to 23. Undergraduates in the oldest age group (40 or older) were more likely than undergraduates overall to be taking courses that were not leading to any degree or certificate (16 percent versus 7 percent).

The relatively short time frame of vocational certificate programs may attract students with limited time. This may have been the case for undergraduates with children (including single parents), 20 percent of whom were enrolled in vocational certificate programs, compared with 12 percent of undergraduates overall.

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