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REPORT: Current Term Enrollment Report – Spring 2014

Current Term Enrollment Estimates Report

Overview

In the current term (spring 2014), overall postsecondary enrollments decreased 0.8% from the previous spring. Enrollments decreased among four-year for-profit institutions (-4.9 percent) and two-year public institutions (-2.7 percent). However, enrollments increased slightly among four-year public institutions (+0.7%) and four-year private non-profit institutions (+2.0%).

Current Term Enrollment Estimates, published every December and May by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, include national enrollment estimates by institutional sector, state, enrollment intensity, age group, and gender. Enrollment estimates are adjusted for Clearinghouse data coverage rates by institutional sector, state, and year. As of spring 2014, postsecondary institutions actively submitting enrollment data to the Clearinghouse account for 96 percent of enrollments at U.S. Title IV, degree-granting institutions. Most institutions submit enrollment data to the Clearinghouse several times per term, resulting in highly current data. Moreover, since the Clearinghouse collects data at the student level, it is possible to report an unduplicated headcount, which avoids double-counting students who are simultaneously enrolled at multiple institutions.

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Figure 1: Percent Change from Previous Year, Enrollment by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Figure 1: Percent Change from Previous Year, Enrollment by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

 

Figure 1 shows enrollments decreased among four-year for-profit institutions (-4.9 percent) and two-year public institutions (-2.7 percent). However, enrollments increased slightly among four-year public institutions (+0.7%) and four-year private nonprofit institutions (+2.0%).


Figure 2: Percent Change from Fall to Spring, Enrollment by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Figure 2: Percent Change from Fall to Spring, Enrollment by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

 

Figure 2 shows fall-to-spring percent changes in enrollments by institutional sector, for each of the last three years. Typically, spring enrollments are lower than fall enrollments, but it is important to recognize that this is not an attrition rate for individual students. Rather, the drop represents the net effect of fall student attrition, graduation, and stopout, combined with new and returning spring student enrollments. The overall difference between fall and spring enrollment totals (all sectors) decreased in spring 2014, with enrollments 4.7% below the fall 2013 total.


Table 1: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)
SPRING 2014 SPRING 2013 SPRING 2012
Sector Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Total Enrollment, All Sectors  18,948,521 -0.8% 19,105,651 -2.3% 19,550,391 -0.3%
Four-Year, Public  7,363,599 0.7% 7,312,261 -1.1% 7,397,012 -0.1%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit  3,694,299 2.0% 3,620,640 0.5% 3,601,383 3.8%
Four-Year, For-Profit  1,280,716 -4.9% 1,347,238 -8.7% 1,476,010 -9.3%
Two-Year, Public  6,179,033 -2.7% 6,351,609 -3.6% 6,591,687 -1.1%
Unduplicated Student Headcount(all sectors)  18,587,703 -1.0% 18,766,884 -2.1% 19,178,473 -0.2%
UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 1 provides enrollment counts submitted to the Clearinghouse by April 11 of each year. Enrollments represent one student in one institution and thus would double-count a student enrolled simultaneously at two institutions. The unduplicated headcount provides the number of unique students with no double-counting. This figure can be used to determine the percentage of concurrent enrollments in any given year. In each term, about 2.0 percent of total enrollments can be accounted for by students enrolling in more than one institution.

Less-than-two-year institutions have been aggregated with two-year institutions. Two-year for-profits and two-year private nonprofits are not shown in the table due to small counts, but enrollments from those sectors are included in the overall totals. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this document.


Table 2: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Intensity Level (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)
SPRING 2014 SPRING 2013 SPRING 2012
Sector Enrollment Intensity Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors Full-Time 11,674,997 -0.5% 11,731,790 -2.7% 12,060,023 -0.8%
Part-Time 7,273,523 -1.4% 7,373,861 -1.6% 7,490,368 0.5%
Four-Year, Public Full-Time 5,282,508 0.8% 5,239,044 -0.8% 5,283,906 0.0%
Part-Time 2,081,091 0.4% 2,073,217 -1.9% 2,113,106 -0.3%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Full-Time 2,821,072 2.1% 2,762,099 0.3% 2,755,060 3.2%
Part-Time 873,227 1.7% 858,541 1.4% 846,324 5.7%
Four-Year, For-Profit Full-Time 922,895 -6.2% 984,400
Part-Time 357,821 -1.4% 362,838
Two-Year, Public Full-Time 2,400,199 -3.1% 2,476,569 -5.2% 2,613,356 -4.2%
Part-Time 3,778,835 -2.5% 3,875,040 -2.6% 3,978,331 1.0%
UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 2 provides counts of spring term enrollments by the enrollment intensity of the student. Enrollment intensity is defined by the institution and based on the earliest data submitted for a student in any given term. As a result, the intensity generally reflects the student’s intended workload at the beginning of the term. Less-than-two-year institutions have been aggregated with two-year institutions. Two-year for-profits and two-year private nonprofits are not shown in the table due to small counts, but enrollments from those sectors are included in the overall totals.

Two large for-profit institutions began participating with the Clearinghouse in spring 2013, altering the ratio of full-time to part-time students. As a result, comparisons to prior years are not meaningful. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this document.


Table 3: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Age Group (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)
SPRING 2014 SPRING 2013 SPRING 2012
Sector Age Group Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors 24 and Under 11,642,930 0.7% 11,562,527 -1.4% 11,728,592 0.3%
Over 24 7,305,590 -3.1% 7,543,124 -3.6% 7,821,799 -1.1%
Four-Year, Public 24 and Under 5,119,524 1.9% 5,025,237 -0.1% 5,031,544 0.4%
Over 24 2,244,075 -1.9% 2,287,024 -3.3% 2,365,468 -1.1%
Four-Year, Private NonProfit 24 and Under 2,214,743 2.1% 2,169,278 0.5% 2,159,413 2.7%
Over 24 1,479,555 1.9% 1,451,362 0.7% 1,441,971 5.4%
Four-Year, For-Profit 24 and Under 239,104 -5.8% 253,913 -10.2% 282,607 -9.7%
Over 24 1,041,612 -4.7% 1,093,325 -8.4% 1,193,403 -9.2%
Two-Year, Public 24 and Under 3,718,792 -0.5% 3,737,580 -1.7% 3,803,654 0.0%
Over 24 2,460,242 -5.9% 2,614,029 -6.2% 2,788,033 -2.7%
UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 3 provides counts of spring term enrollments by student age group. Student age is calculated as of the first day of the term (a date specific to the institution). Less-than-two-year institutions have been aggregated with two-year institutions. Two-year for-profits and two-year private nonprofits are not shown in the table due to small counts, but enrollments from those sectors are included in the overall totals. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this document.


Table 4: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Gender (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)
SPRING 2014 SPRING 2013 SPRING 2012
Sector Gender Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors Men 8,153,001 -0.5% 8,195,317 -1.7% 8,334,338 -0.6%
Women 10,795,520 -1.1% 10,910,335 -2.7% 11,216,053 -0.1%
Four-Year, Public Men 3,314,770 1.0% 3,282,430 -0.8% 3,310,388 0.1%
Women 4,048,829 0.5% 4,029,831 -1.4% 4,086,624 -0.3%
Four-Year, Private NonProfit Men 1,541,060 1.8% 1,514,267 0.9% 1,500,286 3.3%
Women 2,153,239 2.2% 2,106,373 0.3% 2,101,097 4.2%
Four-Year, For-Profit Men 460,769 -4.8% 484,200 -7.3% 522,293 -11.0%
Women 819,947 -5.0% 863,037 -9.5% 953,717 -8.3%
Two-Year, Public Men 2,653,178 -2.1% 2,710,496 -2.4% 2,777,624 -1.5%
Women 3,525,855 -3.2% 3,641,114 -4.5% 3,814,062 -0.8%
UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 4 provides counts of spring term enrollments by gender. Institutions reported student gender to the Clearinghouse for slightly less than half of all students. For all other students, gender was imputed based on first name. Less-than-two-year institutions have been aggregated with two-year institutions. Two-year for-profits and two-year private nonprofits are not shown in the table due to small counts, but enrollments from those sectors are included in the overall totals. Additional notes on data, coverage, and imputation of gender are included at the end of this document.


Table 5: Estimated Enrollment by State of Institution (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)
SPRING 2014 SPRING 2013 SPRING 2012
State Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Multi-State Institutions 955,114 -5.5% 1,010,937 -14.5% 1,182,037 -9.9%
Alabama  269,045 0.1%  268,761 -3.7%  279,140 -3.2%
Alaska  29,969 -4.4%  31,337 -4.1%  32,685 2.7%
Arizona  382,693 -0.2%  383,548 3.0%  372,323 0.7%
Arkansas  154,632 -0.6%  155,620 -4.0%  162,116 0.6%
California  2,373,314 -0.3%  2,381,299 -3.1%  2,458,398 -1.1%
Colorado  300,077 -2.1%  306,534 -1.6%  311,390 0.5%
Connecticut  187,085 -1.0%  188,944 0.2%  188,539 2.0%
Delaware  54,166 0.5%  53,873 1.0%  53,322 2.5%
District of Columbia  72,223 -1.7%  73,470 -0.1%  73,512 -2.1%
Florida  1,018,476 0.0%  1,018,405 -0.1%  1,019,518 1.9%
Georgia  455,148 -0.8%  458,725 -2.8%  471,773 -2.6%
Hawaii  57,018 -4.8%  59,897 -2.3%  61,296 -0.2%
Idaho  94,753 -1.4%  96,076 3.3%  92,970 5.2%
Illinois  687,305 -3.1%  709,320 -3.5%  735,104 -2.4%
Indiana  365,681 -1.1%  369,582 -3.6%  383,439 -1.1%
Iowa  270,906 -8.4%  295,763 -5.9%  314,211 0.2%
Kansas  182,579 -2.8%  187,770 -0.9%  189,495 1.6%
Kentucky  239,075 -0.9%  241,318 -2.4%  247,264 -1.2%
Louisiana  221,419 -3.9%  230,366 -4.2%  240,461 -0.7%
Maine  66,427 0.8%  65,929 -2.8%  67,822 -2.3%
Maryland  350,376 -2.0%  357,367 -2.6%  366,883 -0.1%
Massachusetts  453,198 -0.7%  456,512 1.2%  451,174 -0.4%
Michigan  572,015 -4.5%  598,846 -1.6%  608,444 2.5%
Minnesota  391,383 -2.4%  401,057 -2.0%  409,414 -1.8%
Mississippi  156,264 -1.8%  159,115 -3.2%  164,425 0.2%
Missouri  375,209 -1.9%  382,482 -3.4%  395,844 2.6%
Montana  49,685 -3.7%  51,587 -1.2%  52,196 -0.5%
Nebraska  128,204 -2.3%  131,256 -3.4%  135,933 1.6%
Nevada  106,119 1.4%  104,659 -1.4%  106,140 0.6%
New Hampshire  94,782 15.5%  82,080 9.4%  75,000 2.7%
New Jersey  383,677 -1.3%  388,776 -1.3%  393,952 -1.4%
New Mexico  130,831 -2.6%  134,375 -0.8%  135,464 -1.5%
New York  1,123,782 -1.1%  1,136,429 -0.9%  1,147,315 -0.4%
North Carolina  516,153 -1.6%  524,635 -0.3%  526,225 -2.3%
North Dakota  50,661 0.0%  50,652 -1.5%  51,434 1.1%
Ohio  616,685 -2.4%  631,552 -5.0%  664,744 -3.2%
Oklahoma  184,985 -1.6%  188,076 -2.7%  193,214 -1.1%
Oregon  255,497 5.2%  242,853 -3.2%  250,903 -1.7%
Pennsylvania  698,476 -1.1%  706,598 -2.3%  723,597 -1.8%
Rhode Island  68,056 -0.1%  68,106 -1.4%  69,106 -1.8%
South Carolina  230,427 -0.4%  231,298 -1.9%  235,896 1.6%
South Dakota  44,176 -1.2%  44,721 0.6%  44,468 -2.5%
Tennessee  289,339 -3.2%  298,923 -0.5%  300,538 -1.0%
Texas  1,365,908 1.3%  1,348,833 -0.5%  1,355,736 -0.8%
Utah  242,767 0.3%  242,033 -1.7%  246,102 4.4%
Vermont  40,475 -0.7%  40,761 -3.6%  42,291 -1.5%
Virginia  506,612 0.0%  506,532 -1.3%  512,947 2.8%
Washington  326,751 0.1%  326,285 -3.8%  339,270 -3.2%
West Virginia  158,743 2.3%  155,131 0.7%  154,064 6.2%
Wisconsin  320,450 -0.6%  322,526 -2.7%  331,348 -2.6%
Wyoming  29,990 -3.0%  30,924 -1.5%  31,402 -1.2%
UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 5 provides enrollment counts by the state where the institution is located. Institutions that span multiple states have been included in a separate line called “multi-state institutions.” Enrollments for these institutions are not included in any of the other state-level totals. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this document.


Notes on the Data

National Coverage of the Data

As of spring 2014, institutions actively submitting enrollment data to the Clearinghouse account for 96 percent of all enrollments at Title IV, degree-granting institutions in the nation. Because Clearinghouse participation grew over the period covered by this report, and because coverage of institutions (i.e., percentage of all institutions participating in the Clearinghouse) is not 100 percent for any individual year, weights were applied by institutional sector and state to better approximate enrollment figures for all institutions nationally. Using all IPEDS Title IV, degree-granting institutions as the base study population, weights for each institution type and state were calculated using the inverse of the rate of enrollment coverage for that sector or state in the relevant year. Given the unavailability of fall 2013 IPEDS enrollments at the time of publication, fall 2012 IPEDS enrollments were used as the basis for calculating the spring 2014 Clearinghouse coverage rates.

For detailed statistics on enrollment coverage as well as several other aspects of Clearinghouse data, visit the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center’s “Working With Our Data” page.

Differences from IPEDS

National Student Clearinghouse data are nonadjudicated, administrative data that come directly from college and university registrars. These data differ from IPEDS survey data in a number of important ways:

  1. Term definition: IPEDS does not conduct a spring enrollment survey, so there are no comparable IPEDS numbers for the spring. For Clearinghouse reporting, institutions provide the start- and end-dates for each enrollment, rather than formally designating fall or spring terms.Spring Terms included in the Current Term Enrollment Estimates are those that:
    • began between January 15 and March 31, inclusive OR
    • ended between February 15 and April 30, inclusive OR
    • began before January 15 AND ended after April 30.
  2. Degree-granting status: When referencing IPEDS enrollment counts, it is important to distinguish counts limited to degree-granting institutions from those that also include non-degree granting institutions. NCES publishes both of these counts in IPEDS First-Look Reports. The Clearinghouse counts in this report are limited to Title IV, degree-granting institutions.
  3. Enrollment status changes: Institutions submit data to the Clearinghouse throughout a given term, capturing changes in enrollment status from one submission to the next. The counts in this report include all students whose institution submitted at least one enrollment record showing the student as enrolled either full-time, half-time, or less-than-half-time during the term. For IPEDS reporting, an institution generally counts a student according to the student’s enrollment status as of the institution’s IPEDS census date.
  4. International students: As the Clearinghouse continues to enhance its data collections to better support the needs of the education community, enrollment records for international students are starting to become more complete than in past years. Because this is a recent development, in order to ensure consistent year-to-year comparisons, international students have been excluded from this report. (In the most recent years for which IPEDS data are available, slightly less than four percent of the total IPEDS enrollment is accounted for by the nonresident alien category.)
Imputation of Gender

Institutions reported student gender to the Clearinghouse for slightly less than half of all students included in this report. The genders of the remaining students were imputed using a table of name-gender pairs that the Research Center developed using data publicly available from the Census Bureau and the Social Security Administration as well as the institution-reported data. The imputation used only those pairs in which the name had at least two instances and was associated with a single gender in at least 95 percent of the instances. The imputation is accurate in 99.6 percent of the cases with known gender. A detailed document describing this approach resides on the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center’s “Working With Our Data” Web page.


Pearson Foundation

The Current Term Enrollment Estimates report was made possible through the generous support of the Pearson Foundation.


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