For Immediate Release: WSCUC Applauds Enhanced Emphasis on College Graduation Rates

WSCUC Applauds Enhanced Emphasis on College Graduation Rates

ALAMEDA, CA – As one of the seven regional higher education accreditors, the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) today joined its Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions (C-RAC) partners in announcing a nationwide effort to place increased emphasis on graduation rates as part of accreditors’ ongoing review of colleges and universities.

WSCUC president Dr. Mary Ellen Petrisko said, “WSCUC and other regional accreditors have been looking at graduation rate data as an indicator of student success. This C-RAC announcement codifies our various efforts to make sure all accreditors are monitoring this valuable metric as part of the review process.

“Furthermore, the C-RAC initiative also acknowledges the limitations of traditional graduation rate data, which at times reflects only a small percentage of an institution’s student body. By recognizing the need to consider graduation rates together with additional information, such as transfer rates and the enrollment patterns of nontraditional students, accreditors nationwide can begin to provide a clearer picture of the accomplishments and challenges in our nation’s higher education system.”

In 2013, building on years of research, WSCUC launched an effort to collect and provide more comprehensive data on student success, which led to the development of the Graduation Rate Dashboard. Currently, federal graduation rate data only covers approximately 40 percent of the nearly one million undergraduates in the WSCUC region. WSCUC’s Graduation Rate Dashboard, on the other hand, captures data that considers all students, regardless of transfer, full-time or part-time enrollment status or time to degree. 

As a result, the Graduation Rate Dashboard provides institutions with more actionable and inclusive information regarding student success; helps shine a light on enrollment, retention and graduation patterns across all student demographics; and allows WSCUC and institutions to better identify and address issues that affect student success. 

To learn more about the Graduation Rate Dashboard, click here.

To learn more about the C-RAC announcement, click here