A State-Level View of Student Completion Rates Includes for the First-Time, Race and Ethnicity Outcomes for Four-Year Public Institutions

National results show that college completion patterns among Black, Hispanic, white, and Asian four-year, public starters vary widely across states, according to a new nationwide report recently released by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.

 

The Research Center’s Completing College: A State-Level View of Student Completion Rates, which includes for the first-time, state-level completion results by race and ethnicity for four-year public institutions, provides a state-by-state look at the six-year outcomes for students who began post-secondary education in fall 2012.  

 

“These results provide important benchmarks as each state faces different challenges in addressing performance gaps among disadvantaged students,” said Doug Shapiro, Executive Director of the Research Center.

 

The Research Center’s Findings:

National results by race and ethnicity show a gap of 25 percentage points between the overall completion rates of Black and white students who started in four-year public institutions. In 20 states, the achievement gap was narrower than the national average. In two states (Massachusetts and Oregon), that gap was below 15 percentage points.

 

The national completion gap for Hispanic and white students who started at four-year public institutions was 15 percentage points. In 15 states, this gap was less than 10 percentage points and in four states (KentuckyLouisianaSouth Carolina, and West Virginia), the gap was below 5 percentage points.

 

The overall national, four-year completion rate for Black students was 48 percent. In 17 states, the completion rate for Black students was above the national average and in six states (ConnecticutMassachusettsNew HampshireNew JerseyNorth Carolina, and Virginia) it was higher than 60 percent.

 

The national average completion rate for Hispanic students who started in four-year public institutions was 57 percent. In 22 states, Hispanic students had a higher completion rate than the national average and in five states (MississippiNew HampshireNorth CarolinaSouth Carolina, and Virginia), the completion rate was greater than 70 percent.

 

Nationally, Asian and white students at four-year public institutions had completion rates at 77 and 72 percent, respectively. The completion rate surpassed 80 percent for Asian and white students in six states (CaliforniaNew JerseyNorth CarolinaSouth CarolinaVermont, and Virginia).

 

The national completion rate for the fall 2012 cohort who started in four-year public institutions was 65.7 percent. This overall rate includes full-time, part-time and mixed-time students. In 27 states, the rate was higher than the national average. In seven states (IowaMinnesotaNew HampshireNew JerseySouth CarolinaVermont, and Virginia), at least 75 percent who started at a four-year public institution completed a degree within six years.

 

The national completion rate for the fall 2012 cohort who started in two-year public institutions was 39.2 percent. This overall rate includes full-time, part-time and mixed-time students. In 24 states, the completion rate was higher than the national average. In four states (IowaMinnesotaNorth Dakota, and South Dakota), more than half of the two-year public starters completed a credential in six years.

 

The national completion rate for the fall 2012 cohort who started in four-year private nonprofit institutions was 76 percent. In 12 states, more than 80 percent of students who started at a four-year private nonprofit institution completed a degree within six years. These overall rates include full-time, part-time and mixed-time students.

 

As a comparison, the overall national, six-year completion rate reached 58.3 percent for the fall 2012 cohort, according to the Research Center’s report, Completing College: A National View of Student Completion Rates – Fall 2012 Cohort.

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