Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
Curriculum & Instruction
Degree Granting Department
Leadership, Counseling, Adult, Career, and Higher Education
Kathleen P. King, Ed.D.
Donald A. Dellow, Ed.D.
Thomas Miller, Ed.D.
William H. Young III, Ed.D.
college, college student attendance, completion, graduation, graduation rate
One of the challenges facing higher education today is to graduate undergraduate students in a timely manner. Graduation rates are reported to students, parents, and the general public as well as academic and political leaders. The rates are derived using different methodologies. The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) collects data annually by law from every institution offering federal financial aid in the United States. The "IPEDS reported" students are considered students who start in the fall semester, full-time, first-time in college, and graduate from the original institution (no transfers). The adult, part-time, returning, and transfer students, or "IPEDS unreported" students, are left out of the numbers. The purpose of this research is to understand how current college graduation data are collected in the United States and to compare that information with post-secondary attendance and transfer patterns. This study proposes to document the data of "IPEDS reported" and "IPEDS unreported" graduated students from one academic year and to propose alternatives for holistic and inclusive methods for counting graduation numbers that reflect current enrollment trends. Furthermore, emphasis of the serious implications of these data for students, parents, policymakers, institutional leaders, and politicians who rely on these data to make informed decisions regarding higher education will be discussed. This research contributes to innovative solutions for calculating graduation rates that adhere to updated methods that count and value all graduated students and their successes.
Scholar Commons Citation
Wallace, Mary Elizabeth, "An Analysis of the Reported and Unreported Baccalaureate Degree Recipients in IPEDS at a Large Public Research Institution" (2015). Graduate Theses and Dissertations.