Transfer and Completion

Six-Year Completion Rates: Ohio

Percentage of first-time degree-seeking students who entered Ohio Community Colleges in fall 2002 who transferred or graduated within six years, by enrollment status

What Is Measured?

Percentage of students who transferred or graduated within six years

Who Is Counted?

First-time degree-seeking students who entered Ohio Community Colleges in fall 2002

What It Tells Us

First- and full-time degree-seeking students enrolled in Ohio Community Colleges in fall 2002 had a higher rate of transferring than their part-time counterparts (6 percent vs. 4 percent). Full-time students also graduated at double the rate of part-time students (26 percent vs. 13 percent). Considering both rates of graduation and transfer, full-time students had a completion rate of 32 percent, compared with part-time students who had a rate of 17 percent .

Why It's Important

At community colleges, graduation means attainment of a certificate or associate degree. However, many students attend community colleges to take lower-division courses for a bachelor's degree, and some transfer to a four-year institution without obtaining a credential. From the perspective of the community college, these students have finished a curriculum that prepared them for transfer and, therefore, should be considered as having completed. Some states even track and report which community college students graduate from other institutions. Most sources, however, do not specify what proportion of transfer students have finished the coursework required for upper-division standing at the four-year college, and research suggests that many students transfer without reaching this threshold. A completion rate that combines transfer and degree attainment is sometimes referred to as a "success rate."

About the Data

Only students who graduated from Ohio public institutions are included in the estimates of graduates. Transfer estimates are not necessarily limited to Ohio public institutions. Estimates do not indicate the level (two-year or four-year) of colleges that students graduated from or transferred to. For example, students may have transferred to another community college or graduated from a community or public four-year college.

Overall completion rates were calculated by adding graduation and transfer rates.

Data Source

Ohio Board of Regents. (2009). Ohio Community College portraits. Columbus, OH: Author.