• Graduation Rate Dashboard Retired

    December 31, 2020 - WSCUC

The Graduation Rate Dashboard (GRD) contributed usefully to generating a full picture of institutions’ graduation performance, and reinforced WSCUC’s role as an innovator in analyzing student outcomes and developing data tools. The GRD was introduced to the region in 2013 to measure undergraduate retention and graduation rates as one element of a comprehensive analysis of student success conducted during the institutional accreditation review process. The methodology addressed shortcomings in federal data by accounting for all graduates regardless of how they matriculated (first-time or transfer, lower or upper division) or enrolled (part-time, full-time, swirling) or what programs they pursued. The GRD provided metrics for unit accumulation, redemption, and abandonment patterns of undergraduate students at the institutional level. 

Since then, challenges have surfaced in collecting and using GRD data. Reporting was burdensome for institutions; it required extensive WSCUC staff time to verify information; and the data were difficult to interpret when enrollments fluctuated.  In addition, IPEDS has evolved to now track transfer and part-time students as well as first time students. Finally, WSCUC has developed new and more helpful Key Indicator reports that provide detailed information about institutions in the areas of student completion, student finances, post-graduation outcomes, institutional finances, and institution size and context. For all these reasons, the Commission decided in December 2020 to retire the GRD while maintaining WSCUC’s commitment to effective use of meaningful evidence.