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General Policies and Regulations

Graduation Rates

Graduation Rates for All Freshmen
Starting Fall
Cohort Term
6-Year
Graduation Percentage
Estimated Eventual
Graduation Percentage
2004 53.2 64.0
2003 53.5 64.0
2002 54.3 66.4
2001 46.0 58.7
2000 47.1 58.5
1999 45.6 57.3

CSULB has an obligation, under the federal Student Right-To-Know law, to provide information regarding graduation rates to prospective and current students. The "six-year freshman cohort graduation rate" describes the percentage of students who began as freshmen and completed degrees within six years at the same campus. Although important, this measure does not provide complete information, because some students take longer than six years to graduate, some come as transfer students, and some attend several undergraduate institutions before receiving baccalaureate degrees. The tables here show both 6-year cohort rates and estimated eventual graduation (Note 1) rates for both freshmen and transfer students.

About two-thirds of students who begin CSULB as freshmen eventually earn baccalaureate degrees and just over 53% do so within six years. CSULB's current graduation rates are higher than most other public, comprehensive universities of similar large size, funding and student mix. CSULB's rate of improvement has been rapid and the campus continues to work to raise graduation rates and to reduce time to degree. Recent graduates took an average of 5.19 years to complete baccalaureate degrees (for the group whose degrees were awarded in the college year 2009-10).

Graduation Rates for All Transfer Students
Starting Fall
Cohort Term
4-Year
Graduation Percentage
Estimated Eventual
Graduation Percentage
2006 67.7 77.7
2005 68.0 77.2
2004 67.0 76.6
2003 59.7 70.4

Nearly 78% of CSULB transfer students eventually earn baccalaureate degrees and over two-thirds do so within four years of transferring. These rates have been increasing and students are graduating more quickly than in past years. Students beginning as junior transfers graduated in an average of 3.09 years (for the cohort whose degrees were awarded in the college year 2009-10). Community college students intending to transfer can benefit from early advising. Some arrive at CSULB having taken more units than the transfer minimum and with courses that cannot credit toward degrees.

Completing a baccalaureate degree in a reasonable period of time is an important goal for students and parents. Baccalaureate degrees typically require 120-140 units (about 40-47 courses). Earning a 120-unit degree within four years requires full time attendance (15 or more units per semester) and is a "full-time job" that requires about 45 hours per week attending class and studying. Degrees in engineering, sciences and the arts generally require more courses and timely completion requires attending winter session, summer session and/or attending longer than four years. More detailed data can be found at the CSULB Institutional Research web site. Time to degree is quicker for freshmen who arrive well prepared academically, especially in math and English.

Note 1: Estimated eventual graduation rates are based on a methodology developed by the California State University system that takes into consideration the number of students still enrolled in good academic standing at the six-year point in time.

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General Policies and Regulations