Overview

In fall 2017, overall postsecondary enrollments decreased 1.0 percent from the previous fall. Figure 1 shows the 12-month percentage change (fall-to-fall and spring-to-spring) for each term over the last three years. Enrollments decreased among four-year for-profit institutions (-7.1 percent), two-year public institutions (-1.7 percent), four-year private nonprofit institutions (-0.4 percent), and four-year public institutions (-0.2 percent). Taken as a whole, public sector enrollment (2-year and 4-year combined) declined by 0.8 percent this fall.

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 fall 2017, postsecondary institutions actively submitting enrollment data to the Clearinghouse account for 97 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.

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

 

Table 1: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Total
Enrollment, All Sectors

18,811,280   

 -1.0% 19,010,459 -1.4%  19,280,473 -1.7%
Four-Year, Public

8,087,105    

 -0.2%  8,100,118 0.2% 8,086,448  0.8%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit

3,775,147     

 -0.4%  3,788,980  -0.6% 3,811,176  -0.3%
Four-Year, For-Profit

901,331

 -7.1%  970,267  -14.5% 1,134,974 -13.7%
Two-Year, Public

5,624,282

 -1.7%  5,721,676 -2.6%  5,875,163 -2.9%
Unduplicated Student Headcount (All Sectors)

18,463,677  

 -1.1%  18,663,617   -1.4%  18,929,736  

-1.7%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 1 provides counts of fall term enrollments submitted to the Clearinghouse by December 1 of each year. Enrollments represent one student in one institution and thus would count twice 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.

Institutional classifications for the current term are based on the most recently available IPEDS institutional characteristics at the time of publication. 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 of First-Time College Students by Sector (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Age Group Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment
All Sectors

All (18 and Over)

2,652,584

 -2.3% 2,715,815  -1.5% 2,756,812
18 to 24

2,401,666

-1.0%  2,426,292 -0.7% 2,443,447
Over 24

250,918

 -13.3% 289,523 -7.6%  313,365
Four-Year, Public All (18 and Over)

 1,025,757

 -1.1%  1,036,823 -0.4%  1,041,095
18 to 24

994,556

-0.6%  1,000,544 -0.1%  1,001,104
Over 24

31,201

 -14.0%  36,279 -9.3% 39,991
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit All (18 and Over)

446,290

 -2.6%  458,072 -1.2% 463,635
18 to 24

426,853

 -1.7% 434,100  -0.4% 435,793
Over 24

19,437

-18.9%  23,972  -13.9% 27,842
Four-Year, For-Profit All (18 and Over)

53,787

-9.3%  59,311 -23.3% 77,303
18 to 24

 27,360

 -5.4%  28,921 -23.6%  37,863
Over 24

26,427

 -13.0%  30,390 -22.9% 39,440
Two-Year, Public All (18 and Over)

 1,071,401

 -2.3% 1,096,600 -1.4% 1,112,062
18 to 24

916,164

-0.5% 921,111  -0.7% 928,019
Over 24

155,237

 -11.5%  175,489 -4.6% 184,043

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 2 provides counts of fall term enrollments for undergraduate students entering college for the first time. Counts of first-time undergraduates for a fall term are limited to students who had no college enrollment (in any postsecondary institution) at age 18 or above prior to the beginning of the fall term and had not completed a college degree prior to the beginning of the fall term. Former dual enrollment students, first-time college students who had enrolled in college courses while still in high school, are included in the counts of first-time students for a fall term.

Table 3: Estimated Enrollment in Private Nonprofit Institutions by Size of Institution (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Enrollment Intensity Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Under 3,000

1,118,936

-0.2%  1,120,725 -1.1% 1,132,628 -0.1%
3,000 to 9,999

1,204,529

 -1.9% 1,228,198  -0.6%  1,235,128  -0.4%
10,000 or more

1,451,683

 0.8%  1,440,058  -0.2% 1,443,421 -0.4%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 3 provides a deeper look at the enrollment counts for private nonprofit institutions, by institution size. The size of institution is based on the most recently available IPEDS fall enrollment totals. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this document.

Table 4: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Program Level (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Program Level Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment
All Sectors (incl. Two-Year) Undergraduate (All)

16,073,901

 -1.4%  16,297,766  -1.9% 16,607,735
   Associate-Seeking

5,319,452

 -2.3%  5,445,196  -2.4% 5,576,552

   Bachelor’s-Seeking

8,814,333

1.5% 8,680,309  -0.6%  8,735,162
   Other Undergraduate

1,940,116

 -10.7%  2,172,261 -5.4%  2,296,021
Graduate/Professional

2,737,379

0.9%

 2,712,693  1.5% 2,672,738
Four-Year, Public Undergraduate (All)

6,777,472

-0.2% 6,789,507  -0.3% 6,809,676
   Associate-Seeking

644,293

 -1.1% 651,381  5.4% 618,012
   Bachelor’s-Seeking

5,724,702

0.8%  5,679,612 0.2%  5,667,865
   Other Undergraduate

 408,477

 -10.9%  458,514  -12.5%  523,799
Graduate/Professional

 1,309,633

 -0.1% 1,310,611  2.7%  1,276,772
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Undergraduate (All)

 2,653,327

 -0.9%  2,676,080  -1.1% 2,705,471
Associate-Seeking

 115,470

 -7.9%  125,359  -4.3% 131,019
   Bachelor’s-Seeking

2,407,948

0.1% 2,405,767 -0.9%  2,426,819
   Other Undergraduate

129,909

 -10.4% 144,954 -1.8%  147,633
Graduate/Professional

1,121,820    

 0.8% 1,112,900  0.7%  1,105,705
Four-Year, For-Profit Undergraduate (All)

645,821

 -8.6%  706,769 -17.0% 851,464
   Associate-Seeking

110,257

-20.6% 138,794 -39.0%  227,633
   Bachelor’s-Seeking

489,071

 -5.9% 519,519 -10.6% 581,171
   Other Undergraduate

46,492

-4.1% 48,456 13.6%  42,660
Graduate/Professional

255,511

-3.0%  263,498 -7.1% 283,509
Two-Year, Public Undergraduate (All)

5,624,282

 -1.7%  5,721,676  -2.6% 5,875,163
   Associate-Seeking

4,341,201

 0.7%  4,311,800  -2.0%  4,400,551
  Other Undergraduate

1,283,081

 -9.0%  1,409,876  -4.4%  1,474,612

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 4 provides enrollment counts by program level. Beginning in the 2014-15 academic year, institutions began submitting additional data elements to the Clearinghouse to satisfy new reporting requirements for the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). This makes it possible to measure undergraduate and graduate enrollments separately for the current term, starting with fall 2015. The other undergraduate category includes: undergraduate certificate/diploma, teacher preparation and special non-credential programs that have been classified by institutions as undergraduate programs, as well as enrollments that are not part of any structured program. The graduate/professional category includes: post-baccalaureate certificate, master’s degree, doctoral degree, first-professional degree, graduate/professional certificate, and special non-credential programs that have been specifically classified by institutions as graduate-level programs.

Table 5: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Intensity Level (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Age Group Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors Full-Time

11,968,279

 0.3%  11,937,405 -1.5%  12,116,449 -1.5%
Part-Time

6,843,000

 -3.3%  7,073,054  -1.3% 7,164,024 -2.1%
Four-Year, Public Full-Time

5,970,887

 1.1%  5,905,189  0.5%  5,874,016  0.7%
Part-Time

2,116,218

 -3.6%  2,194,929 0.6%  2,181,176  -0.3%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Full-Time

2,962,536

 0.6% 2,944,470  -0.5%  2,959,473 0.5%
Part-Time

812,611

 -3.8%  844,510 -0.8% 851,703  -3.1%
Four-Year, For-Profit Full-Time

566,869

 -8.8% 621,363 -17.5% 753,549 -15.8%
Part-Time

334,462

-4.1%  348,904  -8.5%  381,425 -9.3%
Two-Year, Public Full-Time

2,165,571

-1.5%  2,197,659  -4.5%  2,301,721  -4.6%
Part-Time

3,458,711

 -1.9%  3,524,016 -2.2% 3,604,698 -0.9%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 5 provides enrollment counts by the enrollment intensity of the student. The part-time category includes enrollments reported to the Clearinghouse as three-quarter time, half-time, and less-than-half-time. 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.

Table 6: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Age Group(Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Age Group Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors

Under 18

985,885

-4.0%  1,026,973 8.1%  950,452 5.2%
18 to 24

11,393,085

 0.6%  11,323,587  -0.9%  11,428,843  -0.8%
Over 24

6,432,309

-3.4% 6,659,899  -3.5%  6,901,178 -4.1%
Four-Year, Public Under 18

299,453

-6.2%  319,095  6.0% 300,984 4.1%
18 to 24

5,571,243

 1.0%  5,515,065 0.6%  5,483,841 1.3%
Over 24

2,216,409

-2.2%  2,265,958  -1.5%  2,301,623 -0.6%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Under 18

80,340

 -7.6% 86,955 0.9%  86,201 -3.6%
18 to 24

2,250,935

 0.7%  2,236,276  -1.0%  2,258,195  -0.2%
Over 24

1,443,872

 -1.5%  1,465,749  -0.1% 1,466,780  -0.3%
Four-Year, For-Profit Under 18

2,814

 1.1% 2,782  -26.9% 3,808 -13.1%
18 to 24

161,827

 -7.3%  174,503  -21.2%  221,412  -16.2%
Over 24

736,691

-7.1% 792,981  -12.8%  909,753  -13.1%
Two-Year, Public Under 18

582,965

 -0.5%  585,784 9.9% 533,161  8.0%
18 to 24

3,113,804

 -0.2%  3,120,897  -3.0% 3,216,186  -2.1%
Over 24

1,927,512

 -4.3% 2,014,994  -5.2%  2,125,815  -6.4%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 6 provides enrollment counts by student age group. This table includes all fall enrollments reported to the Clearinghouse, regardless of whether or not the student is enrolled in a credential-seeking program. 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 7: Estimated National Enrollment by Sector and Age Group(Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
Sector Gender Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors

Men

8,024,010

 -1.5% 8,143,148 -1.9% 8,298,399 -1.4%
Women

10,787,270

-0.7% 10,867,311  -1.0%  10,982,073 -2.0%
Four-Year, Public Men

3,585,664

-0.6%  3,608,891 0.2%  3,601,711  0.1%
Women

4,501,441

 0.2%  4,491,227  0.8%  4,453,481 0.7%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Men

1,542,389

 -0.9% 1,556,743 -1.2% 1,574,940 -0.9%
Women

2,232,759

 0.0% 2,232,238  -0.2%  2,236,235  0.1%
Four-Year, For-Profit Men

297,345

 -9.3% 327,765  -21.0%  414,849 -12.4%
Women

603,987

 -6.0%  642,501 -10.8%  720,125  -14.4%
Two-Year, Public Men

2,418,467

-2.0%  2,468,684  -3.2% 2,550,515 -1.6%
Women

3,205,815

 -1.5% 3,252,991 -3.1% 3,355,904  -3.0%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 7 provides enrollment counts by gender. Institutions reported student gender to the Clearinghouse for about one-half of all students. Gender was imputed based on first name for all other students. 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 8: Estimated Enrollment by State of Institution (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
State Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Multi-State Institutions

645,035

 -9.1% 709,643  -15.2%  836,852  -18.4%
Alabama

  290,704

 1.1% 287,404  0.3%  286,442 -0.9%
Alaska

  29,551

 -4.3%  30,885 -6.2%  32,935  1.0%
Arizona

451,539

 3.5%  436,400  1.3%  430,745  2.9%
Arkansas

154,979

 -3.7%  160,851  -1.4%  163,060  -2.4%
California

2,515,551

 0.4% 2,504,626  -0.1%  2,507,463  0.4%
Colorado

291,986

 -0.3% 292,738  -3.6%  303,777  0.7%
Connecticut

187,124

 -1.1% 189,290 -3.3% 195,750 -0.5%
Delaware

55,926

 -1.2% 56,629  -0.7% 57,025 -1.9%
District of Columbia

73,925

 -1.3% 74,914  0.2%  74,756 1.4%
Florida

1,003,014

 -0.4% 1,006,969 -0.2% 1,009,240 -4.3%
Georgia

491,898

 0.8% 487,929 2.2%  477,322  -0.1%
Hawaii

52,938

 -3.5% 54,872  -6.2% 58,502 -4.4%
Idaho

100,851

1.6% 99,283  2.5% 96,886 -0.5%
Illinois

616,520

 -2.9%  634,719  -3.9%  660,808  -4.0%
Indiana

  345,140

-2.8%  355,264  -2.0%  362,456 -2.5%
Iowa

201,485

-0.1%  201,644 -1.4%  204,498 -1.6%
Kansas

193,733

 1.7%  190,521  -1.2%  192,907  -1.7%
Kentucky

238,922

 -0.6%  240,259 -1.1%  242,831  -4.3%
Louisiana

222,640

 -0.5%  223,719  -3.4%  231,654 0.7%
Maine

65,361

 -1.9%  66,599  -2.5%  68,282  -0.6%
Maryland

346,501

-0.2%  347,279  -2.9%  357,723  -0.4%
Massachusetts

444,670

0.0% 444,702  -2.9% 458,146 -0.9%
Michigan

516,291

 -3.7%  536,389  -4.6%  562,230  -3.9%
Minnesota

362,416

 -3.4%  375,066  -2.5%  384,622  -1.6%
Mississippi

166,005

 -1.1%  167,922 0.0%  167,936  -0.8%
Missouri

347,315

 -3.9%  361,320  -2.4%  370,044  -2.9%
Montana

47,811

 -1.4% 48,497 -0.9%  48,941  -4.4%
Nebraska

127,526

 -0.9%  128,656  -3.5%  133,361 2.1%
Nevada

110,085

 1.4% 108,515  -3.2%  112,051  -2.4%
New Hampshire

147,773

 1.2%  145,966 17.2% 124,553 11.0%
New Jersey

383,465

-0.6%  385,842 -1.5%  391,636 -2.8%
New Mexico

115,734

 -4.3%  120,930 -2.0%  123,455  -6.3%
New York

1,092,559

 -2.5% 1,120,904  -2.7%  1,151,599  -0.4%
North Carolina

522,750

 -0.2% 523,726 0.3% 521,944 -3.0%
North Dakota

51,084

 -3.1% 52,732  -0.4%  52,950 0.6%
Ohio

602,612

 -1.1%  609,591  -1.3%  617,835 -1.9%
Oklahoma

187,640

 -2.4%  192,190  0.1% 192,053 -2.6%
Oregon

211,264

 -1.8%  215,087 -3.6%  223,077 -3.0%
Pennsylvania

682,995

 -0.8%  688,220 -2.6%  706,610 -2.0%
Rhode Island

69,543

 -0.3%  69,743 -1.4%  70,746  -1.0%
South Carolina

236,782

 0.1% 236,558  -1.5%  240,176 -0.8%
South Dakota

46,598

 -1.6%  47,350  -0.6% 47,631  1.1%
Tennessee

300,337

 0.2% 299,619  -2.5% 307,253  -0.5%
Texas

1,489,865

 2.4%  1,455,418  -0.8%  1,466,794  1.7%
Utah

317,839

 4.2% 305,137  7.2% 284,639  8.7%
Vermont

40,024

-3.7% 41,571 1.3% 41,040 -0.2%
Virginia

484,523

 -3.0%  499,313  -3.0%  514,926  -1.9%
Washington

316,152

 -0.1%  316,529  -1.7% 322,065 0.1%
West Virginia

144,717

 -3.1%  149,335 -5.7%  158,289  -5.1%
Wisconsin

307,565

 -2.1%  314,199  -4.0%  327,321  -2.5%
Wyoming

29,333

 -4.9%  30,837  1.2%  30,470 1.5%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 8 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.

*In New Mexico, a portion of the fall 2015 decline was due to a system of institutions that is no longer reporting dual-enrolled high school students to the Clearinghouse. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this document.

Table 9: Estimated Undergraduate Enrollment at Four-Year Institutions by Classification of Instructional Program Family

Fall 2017 Fall 2016 Fall 2015
CIP Family Code CIP Family Title Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment
52 Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support

1,623,551

-1.0%

1,639,373

-1.2%

1,659,647 

24 Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities (includes undeclared)

1,248,881

-3.1%

1,289,296 

 4.7%

1,231,558 

51 Health Professions and Related Programs

1,124,546

-1.6% 

1,142,636 

-0.6% 

 1,149,576
26 Biological and Biomedical Sciences

615,946

 2.4%

601,572

 1.6%

592,175 

14 Engineering

608,515

 1.2%  601,119  4.0%  578,127
13 Education

471,650

 -2.1%  481,740  -3.2%  97,775
42 Psychology

438,058

-0.1%

 438,391  -3.2%

452,941 

11 Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services

431,808

6.1% 

 406,889

-0.2%

407,834 

45 Social Sciences

431,043

 0.8%

427,572 

 -1.5%

434,159

50 Visual and Performing Arts

396,994

0.7%

394,347

 -3.9%  410,464
09 Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs

326,179

0.1% 

 325,973  -2.9%  335,815
43 Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Services

294,217

 -2.1%

300,666 

 -6.0%  319,872
30 Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies

242,431

 -1.1%

245,247

 -3.0%

252,876

31 Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies

237,351

 1.1%  234,763  -0.6%  236,219
40 Physical Sciences

149,466

-2.4%

 153,082  -1.6%  155,605
23 English Language and Literature/Letters

142,807

 -2.8%  146,898

-3.9%

 152,822
44 Public Administration and Social Service Professions

139,494

-3.5% 

144,546

 -0.8%

145,750

15 Engineering Technologies and Engineering-Related Fields

106,800

 -1.5%  108,420  -14.5%  126,768
19 Family and Consumer Sciences/Human Sciences

97,012

 -3.5%  100,552

-7.0%

 108,103
01 Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences

93,990

 0.6%  93,442  1.2%

92,358 

27 Mathematics and Statistics

88,064

 1.0%  87,164

1.4%

 85,958
54 History

84,226

 -1.3%  85,302

-3.3%

 88,243
03 Natural Resources and Conservation

78,931

 1.8%  77,542

2.5%

 75,647
16 Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics

52,084

 -5.2%  54,919  -6.1%  58,503
04 Architecture and Related Services

41,303

5.2% 

 39,253

4.1%

 37,725
38 Philosophy and Religious Studies

31,861

 -3.6%

33,056 

 -5.6%

35,017 

39 Theology and Religious Vocations

29,821

 -1.7%

30,335 

 -4.8%

31,858 

49 Transportation and Materials Moving

28,139

5.9% 

 26,571

-2.6% 

27,279

22 Legal Professions and Studies  24,077

-2.9% 

24,793

 -10.9%

27,824 

05 Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, and Group Studies

23,237 

 0.7%  23,083  -2.7%  23,729
10 Communications Technologies/Technicians and Support Services

19,189

 4.9%

18,296

 -8.2%

19,930

12 Personal and Culinary Services

18,584

 -21.4%  23,651

-17.8% 

28,774

47 Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians

15,869

-7.9%

17,226 

 -8.4%

18,810

46 Construction Trades

8,114

 9.4%

7,418

-0.6% 

7,465 

41 Science Technologies/Technicians

7,815

 6.8%

7,316

 15.9%  6,310
48 Precision Production

5,441

-3.9%

 5,663  -1.6%

5,755

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 9 provides college enrollment totals disaggregated by Classification of Instructional Program Family codes. The table excludes the following CIP family codes, each of which had total enrollments of less than 5,000: 25 (Library Science), 28 (Military Science, Leadership, and Operational Art), 29 (Military Technologies and Applied Sciences), 32 (Basic Skills and Developmental/Remedial Education), 33 (Citizenship Activities), 34 (Health-Related Knowledge and Skills), 35 (Interpersonal and Social Skills), 36 (Leisure and Recreational Activities), 37 (Personal Awareness and Self-Improvement), 53 (High School/Secondary Diplomas and Certificates), 60 (Residency Programs).

Table 10: Estimated Undergraduate Enrollment at Two-Year Institutions by Classification of Instructional Program Family

 

Fall 2017

Fall 2016

Fall 2015

CIP Family Code CIP Family Title

Enrollment

% Change from Prior Year

Enrollment

% Change from Prior Year

Enrollment

24 Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities (includes undeclared)

2,013,695

-0.1% 

 2,015,473  -5.1%  2,122,751
51 Health Professions and Related Programs

809,450

 -2.2%  827,811

-1.2%

838,236 

52 Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support

593,707

-2.4%

 608,435  -0.4%  610,584
11 Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services

216,613

 3.9%  208,500

4.3%

 199,918
43 Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Services

206,050

 -2.7%  211,803  -7.6%  229,240
50 Visual and Performing Arts

147,264

-0.9%

 148,664  1.8% 146,064
30 Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies

142,983

-1.8%

 145,543

7.7%

 7.7%
15 Engineering Technologies and Engineering-Related Fields

124,169

-1.4%

125,874

 -5.3% 132,980
13 Education

117,370

 -3.1%  121,135

-5.0%

 127,489
47 Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians

108,842

 -1.0%  109,932  -2.5%  112,802
26 Biological and Biomedical Sciences

101,649

15.4%

88,109

 8.0%

81,577

19 Family and Consumer Sciences/Human Sciences

89,666

 -6.6%  96,005  0.7%

95,317

14 Engineering

89,021

2.3% 

86,996

4.1%

 83,547
42 Psychology

79,181

1.7%

 77,842  8.2%  71,962
45 Social Sciences

75,852

-1.9%

77,307

 3.6% 74,649
12 Personal and Culinary Services

60,078

-5.8% 

63,765

 -4.2% 66,539
48 Precision Production

58,336

-1.2%

59,033

-1.6%

59,969 

46 Construction Trades

52,916

-0.2%

 53,034  4.0%

50,976

31 Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies

48,526

0.7%

 48,200

7.7%

44,743

09 Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs

47,477

-0.5% 

47,709 

 7.7%  44,296
40 Physical Sciences

38,741

 3.4%  37,469

-2.8%

38,534

44

Public Administration and Social Service Professions

38,139

-3.8%

39,630

-5.6%

41,966

01 Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences

32,482

0.9% 

 32,177  -1.8%  32,771
23 English Language and Literature/Letters

30,918

-4.6% 

 32,395

4.0%

 31,154
10 Communications Technologies/Technicians and Support Services

30,716

3.7% 

 29,625  5.8%  28,011
22 Legal Professions and Studies

26,180

-5.6% 

 27,741  -8.7%  30,379
27 Mathematics and Statistics

20,078

-2.8%

 20,661  8.3%  19,085
16 Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics

19,283

5.4%

 18,294  7.6%  16,999
41 Science Technologies/Technicians

16,108

17.4% 

 13,717  -1.3%

13,896

32 Basic Skills and Developmental/Remedial Education

12,969

1.6%

 12,759  4.7%  12,186
54 History

12,021

 12.4%

10,697

 9.6%  9,758
03 Natural Resources and Conservation

 10,048

 0.0%

10,051

2.7%

9,790

49 Transportation and Materials Moving

9,250 

0.8%

9,174 

-14.8%

10,769

04 Architecture and Related Services

6,613

0.3%

 6,595  9.4%

6,026

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 10 provides college enrollment totals disaggregated by Classification of Instructional Program Family codes. The table excludes the following CIP family codes, each of which had total enrollments of less than 5,000: 05 (Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, and Group Studies), 25 (Library Science), 28 (Military Science, Leadership, and Operational Art), 29 (Military Technologies and Applied Sciences), 33 (Citizenship Activities), 34 (Health-Related Knowledge and Skills), 35 (Interpersonal and Social Skills), 36 (Leisure and Recreational Activities), 37 (Personal Awareness and Self-Improvement), 38 (Philosophy and Religious Studies), 39 (Theology and Religious Vocations), 53 (High School/Secondary Diplomas and Certificates), 60 (Residency Programs).

Notes on the Data

National Coverage of the Data

As of fall 2017, institutions actively submitting enrollment data to the Clearinghouse account for 97 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 2016 IPEDS enrollments at the time of publication, fall 2015 IPEDS enrollments were used as the basis for calculating the fall 2016 and fall 2017 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. The data differ from IPEDS survey data in a number of important ways:

  1. Term definition: Most institutions use an October 15 census date when counting fall enrollments for IPEDS, but institutions have some flexibility in determining whether a given term should be counted as a fall term. For Clearinghouse reporting, institutions provide the start- and end-dates for each enrollment, rather than formally designating fall or spring terms. Fall terms included in the Current Term Enrollment Estimates are those that:

    a) began between August 15 and October 31, inclusive OR
    b) ended between September 15 and November 30, inclusive OR
    c) began before August 15 AND ended after November 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 enrolled as either full time, three-quarters 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 year for which data are available (Fall 2015), IPEDS enrollments in the nonresident alien category account for 4.9 percent of all IPEDS enrollments.

Level of Institution

Note that the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center has revised the fall 2016 public sector figures in this report from those published in December 2016 to reflect the fact that some two-year public institutions have since been reclassified in IPEDS as four-year public institutions. This means that enrollment figures for the two-year public and four-year public sectors for the fall 2016 term have been restated. There is no change to the numbers in the “all sectors” category, nor in the private sector categories, and the total numbers of students in the public sector has not changed. Only the allocation of public sector students to two-year vs. four-year institutions has shifted.

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 on the development of our approach resides on the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center’s “Working With Our Data” Web page.