Nearly half of students who began to pursue a certificate or bachelor’s degree in 2003-04 had completed their work six years later, according to statistics released last week by the U.S. Department of Education.
The report by the department’s Institute of Education Sciences tracks the rates at which first-time undergraduates complete degrees, transfer, or drop out. It shows that 49 percent of students who entered postsecondary education in 2003-04 had earned a degree or certificate six years later. Nine percent had received a certificate; 9 percent had earned an associate’s degree; and 31 percent had completed a bachelor’s degree by June 2009.
Another 15 percent of students who began their studies in 2003-04 remained enrolled but had not yet completed a program of study by June 2009; 36 percent had left their schools without a credential of any kind within the six years of the study.