Overview

In spring 2018, overall postsecondary enrollments decreased1.3 percent from the previous spring. Figure1 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 (-6.8 percent), two-year public institutions (-2.0 percent), four-year private nonprofit institutions (-0.4 percent), and four-year public institutions (-0.2 percent). Taken as a whole, public sector enrollments (two year and four-year combined) declined by 0.9 percent this spring.

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 2018, 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)

 

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) changed only slightly in spring 2018, with spring enrollments 4.2 percent below the fall 2017 total.

 

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

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Total
Enrollment, All Sectors

17,839,330

 -1.3% 18,071,004 -1.5%  18,343,655 -1.3%
Four-Year, Public

7,664,873 

-0.2% 7,677,659 2.0% 7,660,065 1.0%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit

3,686,972

-0.4% 3,703,320 -0.2% 3,710,663 0.7%
Four-Year, For-Profit

925,532

-6.8% 993,169 -10.1% 1,104,587 -9.3%
Two-Year, Public

5,291,752

-2.0% 5,399,145 -2.5% 5,537,822 -3.3%
Unduplicated Student Headcount (All Sectors)

17,510,928

-1.3% 17,740,912 -1.5% 18,003,354 -1.4%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 1 provides counts of spring term enrollments submitted to the Clearinghouse by April 11 of each year. Enrollments represent one student at one institution. Thus a student enrolled simultaneously at two institutions would be counted twice. 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 year. In each spring 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 report.

Table 2: Estimated National Enrollment of First-Time College Students by Sector and Age Group (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Age Group Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment
All Sectors All (18 and Over)

754,996

-7.1% 812,301 -3.4% 840,680
18 to 24 607,977 -5.4% 642,653 -1.6% 653,312
Over 24 147,020 -13.3% 169,648 -9.5% 187,368
Four-Year Public All (18 and Over)

202,049

-5.8% 214,517 -2.4% 219,760
18 to 24

184,264

-4.7% 193,312 -1.1% 195,462
Over 24

17,785

-16.1% 21,205 -12.7%

24,298

Four-Year Private Nonprofit All (18 and Over)

81,350 

-9.5% 89,886 -3.3% 92,956
18 to 24

69,148

-8.0% 75,201 -2.9% 77,440
Over 24

12,202

-16.9% 14,686 -5.3%  15,516
Four-Year For-Profit All (18 and Over)

26,392

-24.4% 34,903 -12.6% 39,953
18 to 24

11,356

-21.5% 14,466 -8.4% 15,788
Over 24

15,035

-26.4% 20,437 -15.4% 24,165
Two-Year Public All (18 and Over)

413,546

-6.2% 440,774 -2.3% 451,281
18 to 24

325,242

-4.7% 341,323 -0.6% 343,507
Over 24

88,303

-11.2% 99,452 -7.7% 107,774

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 2 provides enrollment counts for undergraduate students entering college for the first time in the spring term. These are mid-year starters, distinct from the first-year students who started in fall. Counts of first-time undergraduates for a spring 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 spring term and had not completed a college degree prior to the beginning of the spring 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 spring term.

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

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Institution Size Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Under 3,000

1,076,662

-0.2% 1,079,145 -1.5% 1,096,002 1.8%
3,000 to 9,999

1,190,462

-2.4% 1,220,142 -0.2% 1,222,584 1.9%
10,000 or More

1,419,848

1.1% 1,404,033 0.9% 1,392,077 -1.2%

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 report.

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

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Program Level Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment
All Sectors Undergraduate

15,164,757

-1.8% 15,440,300 -1.9% 15,733,524
Associate-Seeking

4,955,226

-3.4% 5,128,573 -3.4% 5,309,001
Bachelor’s-Seeking

8,305,059

1.1% 8,211,512 -0.2% 8,229,989
Other Undergraduate

1,904,473

-9.3% 2,100,215 -4.3% 2,194,534
Graduate/Professional

2,674,573

1.7% 2,630,704 0.8% 2,610,131
Four-Year, Public Undergraduate

6,383,446

-0.4% 6,407,299 0.0% 6,408,460
Associate-Seeking

600,211

-0.9% 605,851 4.7% 578,622
Bachelor’s-Seeking

5,387,148

0.5% 5,362,707 0.8% 5,317,828
Other Undergraduate

396,088

-9.7% 438,742 -14.3% 512,009
Graduate/Professional

1,281,427

0.9% 1,270,359 1.5% 1,251,605
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Undergraduate

2,564,551

-0.9% 2,588,198 -0.8% 2,607,844
Associate-Seeking

107,561

-9.7% 119,095 -5.2% 125,686
Bachelor’s-Seeking

2,329,770

0.0% 2,328,631 -0.5% 2,341,345
Other Undergraduate

127,219

-9.4% 140,472 -0.2% 140,812
Graduate/Professional

1,122,422

0.7% 1,115,122 1.1% 1,102,820
Four-Year, For-Profit Undergraduate

653,058

-9.3% 720,343 -12.8% 826,498
Associate-Seeking

107,536

-20.4% 135,012 -36.6% 212,835
Bachelor’s-Seeking

493,676

-7.1% 531,189 -6.0% 565,147
Other Undergraduate

51,846 

-4.2% 54,142 11.6% 48,516
Graduate/Professional

272,474

 -0.1% 272,826 -1.9% 278,090
Two-Year, Public Undergraduate

5,291,753

-2.0% 5,399,145 -2.5% 5,537,822
Associate-Seeking

4,050,742

-0.2% 4,059,463 -2.8% 4,176,437
Other Undergraduate

1,241,010

-7.4% 1,339,682 -1.6% 1,361,385

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)

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Enrollment Intensity Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors Full-Time

11,042,463

-0.2% 11,061,293 -2.0% 11,286,984 -1.4%
Part-Time

6,796,867

-3.0% 7,009,711 -0.7% 7,056,672 -1.3%
Four-Year, Public Full-Time

5,534,903

0.9% 5,487,094 0.2% 5,475,574 1.2%
Part-Time

2,129,970

-2.8% 2,190,565 0.3% 2,184,491 0.4%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Full-Time

2,831,331

0.3% 2,823,500 -0.8% 2,846,046 1.2%
Part-Time

855,641

-2.7% 879,820 1.8% 864,618 -1.0%
Four-Year, For-Profit Full-Time

585,238

-6.8% 627,791 -13.8% 728,708 -11.3%
Part-Time

340,295

-6.9% 365,378 -2.8% 375,880 -4.9%
Two-Year, Public Full-Time

1,902,265

-2.4% 1,948,578 -5.1% 2,053,804 -6.0%
Part-Time

3,389,488

-1.8% 3,450,567 -1.0% 3,484,018 -1.7%

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. Additional notes on data and coverage are included at the end of this report.

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

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Age Group Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors Under 18

665,584

-1.2% 673,413 9.3% 616,364 9.3%
18 to 24

10,818,736

0.4% 10,779,213 -0.7% 10,858,601 -0.8%
Over 24

6,355,009

-4.0% 6,618,377 -3.6% 6,868,691 -3.1%
Four-Year, Public Under 18

169,279

-2.4% 173,368 7.0% 162,076 7.2%
18 to 24

5,304,671

1.1% 5,248,721 0.9% 5,203,496 1.4%
Over 24

2,190,923

-2.9% 2,255,569 -1.7% 2,294,493 -0.5%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Under 18

30,612

-5.9% 32,534 5.5% 30,844 9.4%
18 to 24

2,181,654

0.6% 2,169,716 -0.2% 2,174,450 -0.1%
Over 24

1,474,706

-1.8% 1,501,070 -0.3% 1,505,370 1.7%
Four-Year, For-Profit Under 18

1,174

-20.2% 1,470 -17.9% 1,791 0.6%
18 to 24

162,476

-6.7% 174,131 -13.6% 201,614 -15.1%
Over 24

761,883

-6.8% 817,568 -9.3% 901,183 -7.9%
Two-Year, Public Under 18

452,302

2.1% 442,823 10.6% 400,245 10.0%
18 to 24

2,948,230

-0.8% 2,973,206 -2.5% 3,049,132 -3.0%
Over 24

1,891,220

-4.6% 1,983,116 -5.0% 2,088,445 -6.1%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 6 provides enrollment counts by student age group. This table includes all 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 Gender (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
Sector Gender Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
All Sectors Men

7,573,875

-1.9% 7,718,682 -2.1% 7,881,732 -1.2%
Women

10,265,455

-0.8% 10,352,322 -1.0% 10,461,923 -1.4%
Four-Year, Public Men

3,386,847

-0.6% 3,407,852 -0.3% 3,418,713 0.9%
Women

4,278,027

0.2% 4,269,806 0.7% 4,241,352 1.1%
Four-Year, Private Nonprofit Men

1,502,952

-0.9% 1,517,108 -0.9% 1,531,114 0.2%
Women

2,184,020

-0.1% 2,186,213 0.3% 2,179,550 1.0%
Four-Year, For-Profit Men

301,390

-10.2% 335,515 -16.5% 401,847 -9.0%
Women

624,143

-5.1% 657,654 -6.4% 702,740 -9.4%
Two-Year, Public Men

2,263,782

-2.7% 2,326,679 -2.6% 2,389,426 -3.2%
Women

3,027,970

-1.4% 3,072,466 -2.4% 3,148,395 -3.5%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 7 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 report.

Table 8: Estimated Enrollment by State of Institution (Title IV, Degree-Granting Institutions)

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
State Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year
Multi-State Institutions

671,213

-6.7% 719,094 -15.0% 845,686 -14.4%
Alabama

271,867

0.3% 271,131 1.4% 267,350 -1.3%
Alaska

24,155

-6.0% 25,693 -5.8% 27,282 -4.5%
Arizona

419,018

1.3% 413,453 2.8% 402,232 3.3%
Arkansas

144,149

-0.7% 145,213 -3.6% 150,561 1.0%
California

2,386,636

0.2% 2,382,402 -0.8% 2,400,525 0.7%
Colorado

273,570

-3.2% 282,619 -4.7% 296,568 0.8%
Connecticut

180,608

-1.4% 183,116 -1.2% 185,418 -3.7%
Delaware

54,366

3.3% 52,610 0.0% 52,635 -3.9%
District of Columbia

72,196

0.1% 72,112 0.1% 72,017 1.1%
Florida

936,435

-1.8% 953,439 -0.3% 956,679 -2.0%
Georgia

471,091

2.3% 460,509 -0.3% 461,961 0.2%
Hawaii

49,781

-2.4% 51,028 -4.8% 53,615 -4.2%
Idaho

99,196

3.1% 96,258 2.7% 93,768 3.2%
Illinois

614,839

0.2% 613,902 -2.9% 631,965 -4.4%
Indiana

342,702

1.5% 337,564 -1.0% 341,037 -3.8%
Iowa  191,678 0.0% 191,710 -0.9% 193,452 -2.1%
Kansas

177,010

0.5% 176,187 -0.3% 176,652 -1.5%
Kentucky

217,499 

-1.5% 220,783 -0.7% 222,277 -1.8%
Louisiana

210,300  

1.0% 208,264 -3.1% 214,835 -0.3%
Maine

62,182

-2.1% 63,486 -1.5% 64,461 -2.6%
Maryland

328,435

-1.3% 332,639 -1.6% 338,038 -2.1%
Massachusetts

431,285

-0.8% 434,696 -1.9% 442,930 0.7%
Michigan

486,568 

-4.4% 509,139 -3.7% 528,913 -4.2%
Minnesota

356,767

-3.1% 368,029 -2.1% 375,734 -0.8%
Mississippi

153,850

-0.6% 154,787 1.7% 152,147 -1.9%
Missouri  324,831 -3.0% 334,793 -3.7% 347,620 -2.5%
Montana

45,912

-0.3% 46,028 -1.5% 46,723 -2.8%
Nebraska

120,827

-1.4% 122,574  0.4% 123,126 -5.1%
Nevada

104,233 

1.6% 102,622 -0.8% 103,450 0.6%
New Hampshire

147,568 

 0.8% 146,350  16.2% 125,940  11.6%
New Jersey

365,660

0.9% 362,379 -1.4% 367,621 -2.8%
New Mexico

107,679

-5.1% 113,495 -1.4% 115,113 -4.0%
New York

1,032,224

-4.2% 1,077,832 -1.8% 1,097,138 -1.2%
North Carolina

494,766

-0.5% 497,176 -0.9% 501,532 -1.6%
North Dakota

48,358

-1.7% 49,184 -1.8% 50,067 -0.6%
Ohio

576,004

-1.6% 585,627 -0.5% 588,502 -2.5%
Oklahoma

171,722

-2.3% 175,746 -1.5% 178,351 2.0%
Oregon

216,992

-3.2% 224,247 -3.5% 232,433 -2.0%
Pennsylvania

645,132

-1.5% 654,727 -1.9% 667,392 -2.9%
Rhode Island

66,994

-0.4% 67,275 -0.8% 67,821 0.4%
South Carolina

218,257

-0.5% 219,425 -2.1% 224,127 -1.5%
South Dakota

45,490

2.0% 44,617 -1.0% 45,089 0.1%
Tennessee

273,868

-0.2% 274,282 -0.5% 275,533 -3.3%
Texas

1,395,380

0.1% 1,394,069 1.7% 1,370,177 2.0%
Utah

312,968

6.8% 292,994 6.1% 276,165 8.5%
Vermont

39,279

-5.3% 41,463 0.7% 41,157 2.1%
Virginia

475,237

-1.0% 480,073 -0.9% 484,558 -3.3%
Washington

327,013

-0.4% 328,305 1.8% 322,554 0.9%
West Virginia

136,857

-6.0% 145,612 -2.0% 148,574 -3.5%
Wisconsin

289,086

-1.4% 293,178 -3.3% 303,221 -4.1%
Wyoming

28,834

-2.2% 29,488 0.1% 29,465 0.8%

UNDERSTANDING THE NUMBERS

Table 8 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 report.

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

Spring 2018 Spring 2017 Spring 2016
CIP Family Code CIP Family Title Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment % Change from Prior Year Enrollment
52 Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support

1,575,286

-2.1% 1,609,337 -0.7% 1,620,091
51 Health Professions and Related Programs

1,074,613

-1.8% 1,094,104 -1.0% 1,104,662
24 Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities

1,058,766

1.6% 1,041,839 2.5% 1,016,585
26 Biological and Biomedical Sciences

579,302

2.7% 564,142 1.6% 555,506
14 Engineering

568,243

1.6% 559,538 2.6% 545,347
13 Education

449,783

-1.4% 456,377 -2.0% 465,925
45 Social Sciences

437,201

-1.9% 445,667 0.6% 443,208
42 Psychology

433,611

-0.7% 436,470 -1.0% 440,736
11 Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services

423,315

3.7% 408,233 1.4% 402,415
50 Visual and Performing Arts

381,994

0.6% 379,757 0.2% 379,128
09 Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs

323,678

-2.1% 330,730 -1.2% 334,755
43 Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Services

277,855

-4.2% 289,991 -3.7% 301,047
30 Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies

229,089

-2.3% 234,398 -2.8% 241,119
31 Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies

228,766

-0.9% 230,876 0.9% 228,753
40 Physical Sciences  141,197  -2.2% 144,322 -2.6% 148,145
23 English Language and Literature/Letters 140,450 -4.7% 147,421 -2.9% 151,792
44 Public Administration and Social Service Professions

139,063

-4.7% 145,984 -1.4% 148,037
15 Engineering Technologies and Engineering-Related Fields

102,533

-2.5% 105,170 -14.8% 123,459
19 Family and Consumer Sciences/Human Sciences

96,475

-4.6% 101,117 -5.2% 106,644
27 Mathematics and Statistics

89,667

-0.1% 89,730 1.9% 88,093
01 Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences 87,641 0.8% 86,954 -0.3% 87,199
54 History

84,478

-2.5% 86,626 -2.3% 88,708
03 Natural Resources and Conservation

78,483

1.0% 77,744 3.7% 74,968
16 Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics

58,128

-4.5% 60,869 -4.5% 63,718
04 Architecture and Related Services

39,704

4.9% 37,839 1.7% 37,211
38 Philosophy and Religious Studies

34,492

-4.9% 36,262 -3.7% 37,672
39 Theology and Religious Vocations

28,746

-4.2% 30,008 -4.5% 31,431
49 Transportation and Materials Moving

27,557

6.9% 25,770 0.3% 25,698
05 Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, and Group Studies

26,022

-2.4% 26,655 1.0% 26,386
22 Legal Professions and Studies

23,777

-2.3% 24,331 -7.3% 26,252
10 Communications Technologies/Technicians and Support Services

18,844

2.7% 18,342 4.5?% 17,546
12 Personal and Culinary Services

17,510

-18.8% 21,551 -7.1% 23,188
47 Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians

15,399

-3.0% 15,875 -7.0% 17,078
46 Construction Trades

10,328

6.6% 9,691 16.4% 8,324
41 Science Technologies/Technicians

7,817

6.5% 7,340 15.6% 6,350
48 Precision Production

5,670

-3.5% 5,875 -2.0% 5,993

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

Spring 2018

Spring 2017

Spring 2016

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)

1,900,584

-1.8% 1,935,912 -1.9% 1,972,594
51 Health Professions and Related Programs

766,962

0.1% 766,309 -3.5% 794,368
52 Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support

564,851

-1.8% 575,449 -3.3% 594,852
11 Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services

207,894

4.1% 199,753 2.3% 195,284
43 Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Services

191,254

-7.2% 206,001 -5.5% 217,998
50 Visual and Performing Arts

140,496

0.4% 139,898 -2.3% 143,175
30 Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies

135,500

-0.4% 136,062 -0.6% 136,871
15 Engineering Technologies and Engineering-Related Fields

116,801

-1.2% 118,241 -5.6% 125,275
13 Education

110,653

-0.5% 111,195 -7.3% 119,962
47 Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians

102,779

-1.3% 104,094 -3.4% 107,754
26 Biological and Biomedical Sciences

101,162

16.3% 86,979 6.8% 81,412
19 Family and Consumer Sciences/Human Sciences

85,050

-7.1% 91,543 -2.4% 93,805
14 Engineering

84,332

1.8% 82,877 1.9% 81,336
42 Psychology

77,294

0.6% 76,830 5.0% 73,174
45 Social Sciences

75,313

-2.5% 77,229 2.1% 75,671
48 Precision Production

57,466

1.0% 56,906 -2.0% 58,075
12 Personal and Culinary Services

54,983

-4.7% 57,702 -7.0% 62,045
46 Construction Trades

54,705

-4.4% 57,251 4.5% 54,775
31 Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies

45,998

1.1% 45,490 2.0% 44,606
09 Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs

45,768

-1.0% 46,235 1.0% 45,790
40 Physical Sciences

37,742

1.3% 37,239 0.4% 37,089
44

Public Administration and Social Service Professions

35,297

-7.2% 38,042 -7.5% 41,107
01 Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences

31,804

0.2% 31,752 -2.1% 32,420
23 English Language and Literature/Letters

29,745

-1.7% 30,245 -0.9% 30,534
10 Communications Technologies/Technicians and Support Services

29,112

3.8% 28,036 -0.7% 28,244
22 Legal Professions and Studies

24,844

-3.9% 25,850 -9.7% 28,623
27 Mathematics and Statistics

19,939

-1.4% 20,227 0.4% 20,155
16 Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics

18,601

5.2% 17,683 5.2% 16,807
41 Science Technologies/Technicians

16,712

30.0% 12,854 -1.1% 13,001
32 Basic Skills and Developmental/Remedial Education

12,133

0.1% 12,116 9.7% 11,044
54 History

11,762

7.6% 10,936 6.0% 10,312
49 Transportation and Materials Moving 9,976 -7.1% 10,733 -9.4% 11,847
03 Natural Resources and Conservation

9,310

-0.8% 9,385 -1.2% 9,502
04 Architecture and Related Services

6,015

-5.6% 6,368 4.7% 6,085

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), and 60 (Residency Programs).

Notes on the Data

National Coverage of the Data

As of spring 2018, 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 2017 IPEDS enrollments at the time of publication, fall 2016 IPEDS enrollments were used as the basis for calculating the spring 2018 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: 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: a) began between January 15 and March 31, inclusive OR b) ended between February 15 and April 30, inclusive OR c) 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, 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: International students are not included in this report. Clearinghouse enrollment records for international students continue to grow steadily as more institutions opt in to providing this data component. In order to ensure consistent year-to-year comparisons, however, we will continue to exclude international students from this report until the data coverage rate reaches a stable level. (According to the most recent IPEDS data, about five percent of the total enrollment in U.S. degree-granting institutions 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 on the development of our approach resides on the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center’s “Working With Our Data” Web page.