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Enrollment

Question:
Do you have information on postsecondary enrollment rates?

Response:

Undergraduate Enrollment

Between fall 2009 and fall 2019, total undergraduate enrollment in degree-granting postsecondary institutions decreased by 5 percent (from 17.5 million to 16.6 million students).

In fall 2019, female students made up 57 percent of total undergraduate enrollment (9.4 million students), and male students made up 43 percent (7.1 million students). Enrollment patterns for female and male students exhibited similar trends between 2009 and 2019. During this period, female and male enrollments both decreased by 5 percent (from 9.9 million to 9.4 million female students and from 7.6 million to 7.1 million male students).

Of the 16.6 million undergraduate students enrolled in fall 2019, some 8.5 million were White, 3.5 million were Hispanic, 2.1 million were Black, 1.1 million were Asian, 670,100 were of Two or more races, 116,400 were American Indian/Alaska Native, and 45,000 were Pacific Islander. Among those with available data between 2009 and 2019, trends in undergraduate enrollment varied across racial/ethnic groups.1 During this period, American Indian/Alaska Native enrollment decreased by 38 percent (from 187,600 to 116,400 students), White enrollment decreased by 22 percent (from 10.9 million to 8.5 million students), and Black enrollment decreased by 17 percent (from 2.5 million to 2.1 million students). By contrast, between 2009 and 2019, Hispanic enrollment increased by 48 percent (from 2.4 million to 3.5 million students).

In fall 2019, degree-granting postsecondary institutions enrolled 548,200 nonresident alien2 undergraduate students, a 46 percent increase from 376,500 students in 2009.


Undergraduate enrollment in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by race/ethnicity and nonresident alien status: Fall 2009 and fall 2019

The data in this figure is described in the surrounding text.

—Not available.

#Rounds to zero.

NOTE: Data are for the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Disaggregated data on undergraduate students who were Asian, Pacific Islander, and of Two or more races were not collected in 2009. In 2009, data for undergraduate students who were Asian included students who were Pacific Islander. In 2009, students of Two or more races were required to select a single category from among the offered race/ethnicity categories (i.e., White, Black, Hispanic, Asian, and American Indian/Alaska Native). Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity. Race/ethnicity categories exclude nonresident aliens. Degree-granting institutions grant associate’s or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs.


1 Disaggregated data on undergraduate students who were Asian, Pacific Islander, and of Two or more races were not collected in 2009. In 2009, data for undergraduate students who were Asian included students who were Pacific Islander. In 2009, students of Two or more races were required to select a single category from among the offered race/ethnicity categories (i.e., White, Black, Hispanic, Asian, and American Indian/Alaska Native).
2In the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), racial/ethnic data were not collected for nonresident alien students, and their data were compiled as a separate group. Race/ethnicity categories exclude nonresident aliens.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. (2021). Undergraduate Enrollment. Condition of Education. U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences. Retrieved January 10, 2022, from https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator/cha.

Postbaccalaureate Enrollment

Between fall 2009 and 2019, total postbaccalaureate enrollment increased by 8 percent (from 2.8 million to 3.1 million students). Postbaccalaureate degree programs include master’s and doctoral programs, as well as professional doctoral programs such as law, medicine, and dentistry.

In fall 2019, female students made up 60 percent of total postbaccalaureate enrollment (1.9 million students), and male students made up 40 percent (1.2 million students). Between 2009 and 2019, female enrollment increased by 11 percent (from 1.7 million to 1.9 million students) and male enrollment increased by 4 percent (from just under 1.2 million to just over 1.2 million students).1

Of the 3.1 million postbaccalaureate students enrolled in fall 2019, some 1.6 million were White, 367,100 were Black, 307,400 were Hispanic, 224,700 were Asian, 86,000 were of Two or more races, 13,400 were American Indian/Alaska Native, and 6,000 were Pacific Islander. Among those with available data between 2009 and 2019, trends in postbaccalaureate enrollment varied across racial/ethnic groups.2 During this period, American Indian/Alaska Native enrollment decreased by 27 percent (from 18,300 to 13,400 students) and White enrollment decreased by 9 percent (from 1.8 million to 1.6 million students), whereas Hispanic enrollment increased by 68 percent (from 183,000 to 307,400 students). Black enrollment was 9 percent higher in 2019 than in 2009 (367,100 vs. 338,000 students), but there was no consistent trend throughout the period.

In fall 2019, degree-granting postsecondary institutions enrolled 425,900 nonresident alien3 postbaccalaureate students, a 39 percent increase from the 305,700 students in 2009.


Postbaccalaureate enrollment in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by race/ethnicity and nonresident alien status: Fall 2009 through 2019

The data in this figure is described in the surrounding text.

—Not available.

# Rounds to zero.

NOTE: Data are for the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Postbaccalaureate degree programs include master’s and doctoral programs, as well as professional doctoral programs such as law, medicine, and dentistry. Disaggregated data on postbaccalaureate students who were Asian, Pacific Islander, and of Two or more races were not collected in 2009. In 2009, data for postbaccalaureate students who were Asian included students who were Pacific Islander. In 2009, students of Two or more races were required to select a single category from among the offered race/ethnicity categories (i.e., White, Black, Hispanic, Asian, and American Indian/Alaska Native). Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity. Race/ethnicity categories exclude nonresident aliens. Degree-granting institutions grant associate’s or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Although rounded numbers are displayed, the figure is based on unrounded data.


1Although male enrollment increased by 4 percent between 2009 to 2019 (from 1.17 million to 1.21 students), enrollment in both years round to 1.2 million students.
2Disaggregated data on postbaccalaureate students who were Asian, Pacific Islander, and of Two or more races were not collected in 2009. In 2009, data for postbaccalaureate students who were Asian included students who were Pacific Islander. In 2009, students of Two or more races were required to select a single category from among the offered race/ethnicity categories (i.e., White, Black, Hispanic, Asian, and American Indian/Alaska Native).
3In the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), data for the nonresident alien category are collected alongside data for racial/ethnic categories. Race/ethnicity categories exclude nonresident aliens.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. (2021). Postbaccalaureate Enrollment. Condition of Education. Retrieved January 10, 2022, from https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator/chb.

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