Students With Associate Degrees Are More Likely To Earn Baccalaureates

Career College Central summary:

  • Community college students who transfer to four-year colleges with an associate degree are more likely to earn a bachelor’s degree than similar students who transfer without one, according to a new study from the Community College Research Center (CCRC).
  • Nearly two thirds of community college students who transfer to four-year colleges do so without first earning an associate degree. And while more than 80 percent of all entering community college students indicate their intention to earn a baccalaureate, only 15 percent end up doing so within six years.
  • The analysis found that students who transferred with an associate degree had an advantage: they were 49 percent more likely to complete a bachelor’s degree within four years, and 22 percent more likely to earn one within six years.
  • “Our study provides evidence that students should be encouraged to complete an associate degree before transfer, and that concomitantly, states should work on implementing policies that guarantee credit transfer for students enrolling at public four-year colleges with a degree,” according to a CCRC press release.
  • Students who transfer to four-year colleges often drop out before completing a bachelor's degree. And because less than a third of them complete an associate degree before transferring, they often leave college with no degree at all.

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