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Graduation rates

Question:
What are the graduation rates for students obtaining a bachelor's degree?

Response:

The 6-year graduation rate for first-time, full-time undergraduate students who began seeking a bachelor’s degree at 4-year degree-granting institutions in fall 2011 overall was 60 percent. That is, by 2017 some 60 percent of students had completed a bachelor’s degree at the same institution where they started in 2011. The 6-year graduation rate was 60 percent at public institutions, 66 percent at private nonprofit institutions, and 21 percent at private for-profit institutions. The overall 6-year graduation rate was 63 percent for females and 57 percent for males; it was higher for females than for males at both public (62 vs. 57 percent) and private nonprofit (69 vs. 63 percent) institutions. However, at private for-profit institutions, males had a higher 6-year graduation rate than females (22 vs. 20 percent).

Six-year graduation rates for first-time, full-time undergraduate students who began seeking a bachelor’s degree at 4-year degree-granting institutions in fall 2011 varied according to institutional selectivity. In particular, 6-year graduation rates were highest at institutions that were the most selective (i.e., those with acceptance rates of less than 25 percent) and were lowest at institutions that were the least selective (i.e., those with an open admissions policy). For example, at 4-year institutions with an open admissions policy, 31 percent of students completed a bachelor’s degree within 6 years. At 4-year institutions with acceptance rates of less than 25 percent, the 6-year graduation rate was 87 percent.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2019). The Condition of Education 2019 (NCES 2019-144), Undergraduate Retention and Graduation Rates.

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