Gender Gap in Graduation Rates for Students Athletes on Scholarship

Data submitted to the U.S. Department of Education and compiled by the National Collegiate Athletic Association shows graduation rates for all students who entered college between 2012 and 2015 and earned their degrees within six years at the same institution at which they enrolled. Of all students who enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs at these four-year institutions between 2012 and 2015, 69 percent earned their degrees by 2021.

When we break the figures down by gender, we see that 71 percent of women earned their degrees within six years compared to 66 percent of men. The gender graduation rate gap varied by race but the graduation rate for women was higher than the graduation rate for men for all major racial and ethnic groups. For African American students there was a 10 percentage-point gap in favor of women. For Hispanics, there was an seven percentage-point gender gap in favor of women.

If we look at students who received athletic scholarships at Division I institutions, we find a much larger gender gap. Three quarters of women students who entered college in 2013 between 2012 and 2015 with an athletic scholarship went on to earn their degree at the same educational institution within six years. Only 62 percent of men who entered college with an athletic scholarship in those years earned a bachelor’s degree by 2021 at the same institution.

Filed Under: Gender GapResearch/Study

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