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Data Matters: Transfer Students Who Complete 4-Year Degrees

By Rebecca L. Weber

Kansas has more students who start at two-year colleges and finish at four-year institutions than any other state.

The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center’s recent Signature Report, Completing College: A State-Level View of Student Attainment Rates, finds that in five states, more than one in five students who began at a two-year public institution finished at a four-year institution.

Kansas tops the list. In that state, one in four students who started at a two-year college earned a degree at a four-year institution within six years. That could be attributed to the statewide policy that allows community college credits to transfer to the state’s public universities.

Virginia followed on the heels of Kansas, with 23 percent of community college students finishing at four-year colleges. South Dakota was the worst performer nationally, at 5 percent. The national average is 16 percent.

The report also found that in 11 states, at least one in five women who began at a two-year institution completed at a four-year institution; in two states, at least one in five men did so. Again, Kansas topped both of these lists.

Check out this 21st Century Center infographic for more information on transfer students by state.



Rebecca L. Weber

is a contributor to the 21st-Century Center.

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