Measuring, Manipulating, and Predicting Student Success: A 10-Year Assessment of Carnegie R1 Doctoral Universities Between 2004 and 2013
Student success measurements for 4-year institutions of higher education are a topic of importance for numerous stakeholders including prospective and current students, parents, staff, faculty, administrators, governing boards, policymakers, and citizens. Common measures of student success are retention rates and 4- and 6-year graduation rates. However, the standardization, accuracy, and reporting of these rates are less than scientific due in part to the operational definition provided by the federal government for reporting graduation rates. The current system for reporting retention and graduation rates are flawed. As accountability continues to increase for institutions of higher education, this analysis provides comparative, qualitative, and quantitative research with the goal of informing and assisting universities, as they strive to increase the rates at which their students succeed. A particular emphasis will be placed on an empirical analysis over a 10-year period of time for retention and graduation rates of 115 Carnegie R1 doctoral universities.