Is It Really Cheaper to Start at a Community College? The Consequences of Inefficient Transfer for Community College Students Seeking Bachelor’s Degrees

By Casey Nguyen

In a recent study, researchers from the Community College Research Center at Teachers College, Columbia University discuss the trade-offs of attending a two-year college before transferring to a four-year college. Their research considered institutions’ sticker price (tuition and fees) and cost of attendance (total expenditures), students’ credit accumulation and failed credits and the diversionary effect which measures the probability of completion for students who attend community college. Continue reading

The Condition of Education 2017: Summaries of Postsecondary Education Data

By Jael Greene

The Condition of Education 2017 was recently released by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). This annual report summarizes the latest education data in the United States using a number of indicators in reporting postsecondary statistics, including undergraduate and post-baccalaureate enrollment, characteristics of students and institution graduation and retention rates. Continue reading

Community Colleges: Multiple Missions, Diverse Student Bodies, and a Range of Policy Solutions

By Jael Greene

The Urban Institute recently published a report that focused on the role community colleges play in postsecondary education. Though much is understood regarding their open admission policies and low tuition, not as much is known about the differences between individual institutions: their different missions and programs, their student demographics and financial structures, how they determine cost of attendance and their use of financial aid and student loans. The report examines the differences between institutions in hopes to guide future policymaking.  It also examines the use of guided academic pathways, transfer-friendly policies and developmental education across institutions. Continue reading