Far Too Many Students Near Completion Are Leaving College

Posted by Civitas Learning on May 21, 2018

By MorraLee Keller, Director of Technical Assistance, National College Access Network

Civitas Learning just released a report that will make us take a pause and refute the idea that all college dropouts leave during or just after their first year in school. This data analysis tells us that one in five students who do not graduate already have 75 percent or more of the credits required. Perhaps even more startling is the fact that one in 10 students have 90 percent of credits needed. These data reflect more than 300,000 students at 53 institutions across the country.

The National Student Clearinghouse estimates that 30 million adults in the United States have some college experience but no degree, despite educational attainment for adults between ages 25 and 29 increasing overall between 2000 and 2016. Attainment levels for a bachelor’s degree or higher have risen from 29 percent to 36 percent, while attainment rates of an associate degree or higher rose from 38 percent to 46 percent. Yet this increase still leaves the United States at 10th in world attainment rankings, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Accordingly, colleges are now focusing their efforts both on entering students and those who are nearing degree completion.


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