Community College FAQs (2023)

Community College Enrollment and Completion

How many students are enrolled in community colleges?

Federal data indicate that 7 million students were enrolled in public two-year colleges during the 2020–21 academic year, about 33% of undergraduatestudents.

In fall 2020, about 4.8 million students were enrolled in public two-year colleges, 29% of undergraduate students. About 1.6 million were full-time students, and 3.1 million were part-time.

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to steep enrollment drops at community colleges. The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center estimates that 4.2 million students were enrolled in public two-year colleges in spring 2022, down 7.8% from spring 2021. That's on top of a 10% drop from the year before.

However, these studies underestimate the number of community college students, as about 100 community colleges offer a small number of bachelor’s degree programs and are listed in federal data as four-year institutions. According to a CCRC analysis correcting for this misclassification, 6.7 million students were enrolled at community colleges in fall 2017, and nearly 10 million students enrolled at a community college at some point during the 2017–18 academic year, about 44% of undergraduates.

Among all students who completed a degree at a four-year college in 2015–16, 49% had enrolled at a public two-year college in the previous 10 years. Nearly 6% attended public two-year colleges only as high school dual enrollment students. Texas had the most former public two-year college students among bachelor's degree earners in 2015–16 with 75%. Rhode Island had the fewest with 24%.

What are the income and racial demographics of community college students?

What is the rate of student persistence at community colleges?

What percentage of community college students obtain a college credential? How does it differ by race, ethnicity, and income?

(Video) Community College: Pros & Cons

Developmental Education in Community Colleges

How many community college students enroll in remediation? How does it differ across demographic groups?

Among students who started at public two-year colleges in 2013–14, 60% took one or more remedial courses within three years. They took an average of 2.9 courses. That compares with 32% of public four-year college students, who took an average of two courses.

Federal data indicate that 68% of students beginning at public two-year colleges in 2003–2004 took one or more remedial courses in the six years after their initial college enrollment; 59% took at least one course in math, and 28% took at least one course in English. At public four-year colleges, 40% of students took one or more remedial courses within six years.

At public two-year colleges, 78% of Black students, 75% of Hispanic students, and 64% of White students took remedial courses. Of students in the lowest income group, 76% took remedial courses, compared with 59% in the highest income group.

How do community colleges evaluate whether students need remediation? How accurately do those measures assess students' college readiness?

How many community college students complete their remedial requirements?

Do developmental education courses help students succeed in college?

What approaches are community colleges taking to reform developmental education?

Dual Enrollment and Dual Credit Programs

How many students participate in dual enrollment?

In 2010–11, approximately 1.4 million students took dual enrollment courses. Seventy-six percent of schools reported that students took dual enrollment courses with an academic focus, and 46% reported that students took dual enrollment courses with a career or technical-vocational focus.

Eighty-two percent of public high schools reported that students participated in dual enrollment courses in 2017–18. Funding was provided by the school, district, or state in 78% of schools with dual enrollment, while in 42% of the schools, families or students paid for the courses. In 10% of schools, another entity provided funding.

Among students who started ninth grade in 2009, 34% ever took a dual enrollment course. White and Asian students were more likely to take dual enrollment courses than Black and Hispanic students.

Former dual enrollment students represented 19% of first-time-in-college, degree-seeking students who started college in fall 2014: 17% of the cohort at community colleges, 23% at public four-year colleges, and 17% at private nonprofit colleges.

(Video) FAQ: Why attend a community college?

How many students take Advanced Placement classes?

What evidence exists that dual enrollment increases college success?

Online Education

How many community college students take online courses?

Just over 70% of public two-year college students, about 3.3 million students, took at least one distance education course in fall 2020. Forty-eight percent of public two-year college students were enrolled exclusively in distance education courses. The percentage of students who take distance education courses had been growing steadily and jumped dramatically in fall 2020due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

How do community college students perform in fully online courses?

Do some students perform better than others in fully online courses?

Community College Costs and Financial Aid

What are the average tuition and fees at community colleges?

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In 2021–22, the average published tuition and fees for a full-time student at public two-year institutions nationally were $3,800, compared with $10,740 at public four-year colleges. After grant aid, students had an average of $660 left for other expenses, well short of the cost of attendance.

According to a CCRC analysis of federal data from 2018, after accounting for grants, 41% of full-time public two-year college students pay no tuition or receive money to cover other expenses. About 12% pay something but less than $1,000 and 21% pay between $1,000 and $2,500. About 26% pay $2,500 or more after accounting for grants.

How many community college students apply for federal aid and receive Pell Grants?

How many community college students work while in college, and how many receive work study aid?

How much education debt do community college students accumulate?

Transfer to Four-Year Colleges

How many entering community college students transfer to a four-year college within six years?

While about 80% of entering community college students indicate they want to earn a bachelor's degree or higher, only 31% of community college students who started in fall 2014 actually transferred to a four-year institution within six years. Among community college students who transferred to a four-year college, 75% transferred to public institutions, 19% to private nonprofit institutions, and 6% to for-profit institutions.

How many community college students who transfer to four-year colleges complete a bachelor’s degree within six years of starting at a community college?

How many community college students who transfer to a four-year college first earn an associate degree or certificate?

Economic Returns to Community College

Do students who complete community college earn more than students who don't?

On average, community college students earn significantly more over their lifetimes than individuals who do not go to community college. Many studies have shown higher earnings for workers who earn community college awards.The Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce estimates that graduates with associate degrees make $2 million in lifetime earnings, compared with $2.8 million for bachelor’s degree holders and $1.6 million for full-time workers with a high school diploma.

But the exact amount varies. It depends on the type and length of the credential andwhat subject is studied, with fields including engineering and health care leading to higher earnings for associate degree holders. Other factors include whether the student transfers to a four-year college and how well their program aligns to a bachelor's degree, as well as the strength of the labor market.

Based on large-scale studies from six states, the average student who completes an associate degree at a community college will earn $5,400 more each working year than a student who drops out of community college. This estimate adjusts for factors such as the subject studied, college attended, and college GPA.

Do certificates help community college students get jobs and earn more?

(Video) What's Next LA Podcast: Community College FAQ's

Explore trends in community college outcomes with our interactive data visualizations.

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What can you contribute to the university as a student answer? ›

I will contribute to college culture in three ways: by participating in class, by being a good roommate, and by not being a problem for anybody. First of all, I will participate in class. In all of the classes I take, I make sure to speak up.

Are all 2 year colleges community colleges? ›

In the United States, community colleges, sometimes called junior colleges, technical colleges, two-year colleges, or city colleges, are primarily public institutions providing tertiary education, also known as continuing education, that focuses on certificates, diplomas, and associate degrees.

What percentage of US undergraduates attend a community college apex? ›

Over 1/3 of undergraduate students are made up of community college students. About 66% of undergraduates have enrolled in a community college at some point after completing high school.

What is the age limit to study in USA? ›

A: Colleges offer only undergraduate degrees while universities offer graduate degrees as well, but the terms are often used interchangeably. Q: Are there age limitations to attend U.S. universities? A: In general, you must have completed high school and you must be at least 17 years of age.

How can you contribute to community in college? ›

12 Ways to Get Involved at College
  1. Join (or start) a club. ...
  2. Work for the school paper or social media sites. ...
  3. Participate in student government. ...
  4. Become a tutor or teaching assistant. ...
  5. Participate in intramural or club sports. ...
  6. Look for opportunities to serve your campus and community. ...
  7. Join a sorority or fraternity.

How can you contribute to the university and community? ›

The best way to contribute is by identifying or ascertaining the community issues. Carry out an informal survey around the community. Write a proposal on the project or services you want to render to the community. Organise focus group discussions with opinion leaders in the community.

How hard is community college? ›

It is easier to get accepted into most community colleges than universities. That's because of their open-admissions policy. However, general education courses at community colleges, which are necessary for earning a bachelor's degree, are just as hard as general education courses at universities.

Can you transfer from community college to university? ›

Yes, you can! When you transfer from a community college into a four-year program, many of your credits may transfer with you. As discussed in the previous section, some schools have varying degrees of articulation agreements that make transferring credits more difficult or easy.

Is community college easier than university? ›

In terms of tuition, ease of admission, flexibility, school-life balance, and many other factors, community colleges are definitely “easier” than a university.

Why are so many community college students dropping out of college? ›

Direct financial costs were the most common reasons for early exit from community colleges, even though the colleges are typically more affordable than four-year schools. Over half of the former students in our survey, 53%, said they left due to the cost of tuition and fees.

What percentage of students fail a class in college? ›

That means more than 1 in 10 undergrads fail a class (since not every student repeats a failed class). What should you do if you fail? Consider repeating the course. Over 90% of colleges allow undergraduates to take a failed class again to improve their grade.

Why is going to a university better than a community college? ›

Universities tend to have more former students who leave legacies to the school in the form of scholarships. Therefore, many universities have multiple scholarships and other financial aid options that community colleges or smaller four-year colleges don't have.

Is 10 years Gap accepted in USA? ›

Usually, a year's gap is acceptable in the USA. If a student has taken a gap of more than a year, he should be able to support it with sufficient evidence. If a student has dropped out of college or took a study gap because of medical conditions, they should present medical proof.

Which age is best for study? ›

The best age to study is when you're young. By the age of seven, a child should start to learn to study. Experts said younger brains might learn things more easily, but older brains may store information more efficiently.

Can I study at 37 years old? ›

You do NOT need to worry that you are too old. You are not old to go back to school. There are quite a few students in the same age group.

How do you answer why should we accept you into our college? ›

College authorities want to know more about your academic interests and commitments. Talk about the specific educational, research, and other academic opportunities offered by the college that appeal to you. Expand on this idea by talking about how these opportunities help support your future goals.

How can I be more active in college? ›

How to Stay Fit, Active and Healthy in College
  1. Walk to class. Walking can help you burn calories, improve muscle tone and reduce stress. ...
  2. Climb stairs on campus. ...
  3. Find a fitness deal. ...
  4. Learn a few moves. ...
  5. Snack well. ...
  6. Don't skip meals. ...
  7. Watch beverage calories. ...
  8. Beware of stress eating.

What would you bring to this school answer? ›

Music, sport, drama, speaking, dance, art are all skills you might bring. Also, an ability to get along with people, fairness, listening, compassion, leadership demonstrated in other areas. I am sure you have things to take to the school, but you needed you do a skills audit to recognise your abilities.

How can I help my community as a student? ›

Here are some ways to get started:
  1. Be a good neighbor. Introduce yourself. ...
  2. Organize a “back to school day” for adults. ...
  3. Offer your expertise. ...
  4. Become a mentor. ...
  5. Bring a problem that needs a solution. ...
  6. Make high school part of community revitalization. ...
  7. Consider running for school board.
7 Sept 2017

What three things would you do to improve your college? ›

  1. Ways to Improve Your College Campus.
  2. Turn the Gym into a Recreation Center.
  3. Keep the Campus Grounds Clean!
  4. Improve Campus Mail Services with Smart Parcel Lockers.
  5. Increase Parking.
  6. Create a Sustainable Student Farm.
  7. Focus on Creating Spaces Where Students Can Come Together.
  8. Go Green.

What can be your greatest contribution to the community as a student? ›

Volunteer Your Time to Help Local Community Organizations

Volunteering as a high school student is a great way to make a difference in your community. However, you should also explore opportunities outside of the ones available through your school organizations and clubs.

What happens if I fail first semester of college? ›

You may be put on academic probation.

Being on probation essentially means that if you don't improve your grades, you may be dismissed from your college or university. This penalty is serious, and your college would not place you on probation unless your grades need substantial improvement.

What are basics in community college? ›

College basics are the core courses required of every student regardless of their major. They typically include English, math, science, history, humanities, social science, etc. The purpose of having basics – both in high school and college – is to ensure that all students receive a well-rounded and balanced education.

How much harder is community college than high school? ›

Generally speaking, college is harder than high school because of the more difficult courses and coursework. College students are also usually on their own, away from family and friends. However, high school can be harder than college, too, depending on the academic rigor and the things teens go through.

Can you do a degree in 2 years? ›

Two-year or accelerated degrees are exactly what they say on the label — degree courses that take two years to complete rather than the usual three or four years. In a fast-tracked course, you would cover the same content and get the same qualification at the end as you would on a three-year course.

Can you transfer with a low GPA? ›

Anyone can transfer college with low GPA scores if they know as much as possible about the admissions system. Trying to transfer to another college with a low GPA is nowhere near as difficult as you might think. It's even shown in the statistics that it's a much simpler process than most people realize.

Is 3.0 GPA good for college? ›

Is a 3.0 GPA in high school considered good? A 3.0 GPA indicates a grade average of “B” and makes you eligible to apply to a wide range of schools, so yes! A 3.0 GPA is generally considered “good.”

What are the disadvantages of a community college? ›

Con: Fewer Programs

You'll probably need to attend a four-year university. While community colleges usually offer dozens of degrees and certificates, they don't provide as much variety as a four-year college. On the other hand, community colleges offer more vocational and technical programs.

What are the advantages of community college? ›

The advantages community colleges offer students are numerous: low-cost tuition/fees, campuses close to home, small class size, and the most significant benefit is the opportunity to transfer to four-year institutions.

Is community college a good idea? ›

Attending community college can be an affordable way to dip your toes into higher education before transferring to a four-year program. But these colleges also offer a breadth of programs that can allow students to forego the university experience entirely.

Why do people not like community college? ›

Many community college students simply do not realize what their schools have to offer in terms of career planning and other support services. They may also fail to take their classes and coursework seriously because they too ascribe to the misconception that community colleges offer a lower quality of education.

What challenges do community college students face? ›

However, many students report obstacles in areas directly related to their academic experience, including online classes, parking on campus, developmental courses, faculty, doing college-level work, and registering for courses.

How do I quit community college? ›

Our step by step guide to dropping out of college
  1. Talk to your teachers. Before you make a final decision to drop out talk to your teachers. ...
  2. Consult with a student counselor. ...
  3. Take care of your transcripts. ...
  4. Aim for a "W" if that doesn't work. ...
  5. Inquire about a leave of absence or a deferment.

What is the hardest major in college? ›

20 Hardest Majors: The Ultimate Guide
  1. Chemistry. At number one on the list is chemistry.
  2. Architecture. ...
  3. Chemical Engineering. ...
  4. Computer Science. ...
  5. Aerospace Engineering. ...
  6. Biomedical Engineering. ...
  7. Materials Engineering. ...
  8. Petroleum Engineering. ...

Is it better to drop a class or fail? ›

Croskey notes that dropping a class is better than withdrawing, but withdrawing is better than failing. “A failing grade will lower the student's GPA, which may prevent a student from participating in a particular major that has a GPA requirement,” Croskey says.

Is D passing in college? ›

At most schools, a D is the lowest passing grade. That means students who earn a D or higher receive credit for the course. However, some schools set special policies around D grades.

How many students are typically in a community college classroom? ›

In community colleges the average number of students in a class range between 25 to 35 while a typical university lecture hall can have anywhere from 150 to 300 students.

Are community colleges free? ›

Some community colleges in the United States offer free tuition, but the vast majority are not free. As of 2022, 20 states provide tuition-free community college, meaning that if you are a resident of that state and meet certain requirements, you can attend classes free of charge.

Do community colleges offer bachelor degrees? ›

Unlike four-year institutions, community colleges do not offer the same volume of majors. Of the community colleges approved to offer a bachelor's degree, most only have one or two majors at that level. But those majors tend to focus more on career readiness.

How do I clear my study gap? ›

The rationale for a gap in education should be well backed up by facts without making it sound dramatic or even negative, but with a clear view and focus on the positive way forward. It is crucial to be candid and truthful, while showing the value addition of the specific break, in terms of career goals or life goals.

Which country allow study gap? ›

Almost all countries worldwide accept study gaps, such as the UK, the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, etc. However, you must show that your gap year was worth the break and that you will bring something unique to your chosen institution.

Can we study at the age of 30? ›

In any country, you can apply for a master's program if you are 30 or 35 or even older. Many students save up for their master's by working in the twenties to minimize educational loans and obtain a degree in the thirties.

At what age is it easiest to learn? ›

It initially becomes harder to learn around the age of 12 because the chemicals in your brain change during puberty. Around the age of 25, your brain patterns solidify, and they will become harder to change. You can still learn new things when you're older, but it might take some extra effort.

At what age do you learn the fastest? ›

Two-year-olds have twice as many synapses as adults. Because these connections between brain cells are where learning occurs, twice as many synapses enable the brain to learn faster than at any other time of life.

What age can you go abroad? ›

To study abroad alone for a longer period of time you will have to be older than 13. The age limit for high school exchange programs are usually 15. To study abroad at colleges and universities you should have finished high school so then you would usually be 18+. However age limits vary by country.

Can I study in USA at age 45? ›

The best aspect of pursuing an education in a USA-based university is that they do not impose strict age limits. Yes, they give admission to foreign students who are between the ages of 14 and 79.

Is 35 too late for college? ›

Is it too late to go to college at 35? It's never too late to go back to school. In fact, there are several possible benefits to attending college as an older adult: Your life or work experience may count for college credit.

How I can contribute to my university? ›

You contribute to universities by paying tuition and being one of many. By both your personal contributions of money and time spent there, you improve the place a tiny bit.

What contributions can you bring to our school? ›

Contribute to Your School with More than Teaching
  • Coaching Opportunities. One of the most common ways teachers can contribute to their school is through coaching opportunities. ...
  • Sponsor a Club or Organization. ...
  • Build Comradery with Peers. ...
  • Grant Writing. ...
  • After School Tutoring. ...
  • Become a Mentor.
17 Jan 2014

How do you answer what will you contribute? ›

The best way to answer questions about your potential contributions to the company is to give examples of what you have accomplished in the past and relate them to what you can achieve in the future.

What can you contribute to the school as a student leader? ›

Empty bins Set up chairs Read or sing at special ceremonies Assist in school gardening Bring in items to donate to charity Volunteer with charities Assist at events such as school plays, open days etc. Student leaders make odd jobs a leadership task.

How do you answer why should we accept you into our college? ›

College authorities want to know more about your academic interests and commitments. Talk about the specific educational, research, and other academic opportunities offered by the college that appeal to you. Expand on this idea by talking about how these opportunities help support your future goals.

What did you enjoy the most about your college life? ›

One of the best things about college life is that you get a new experience every day. In my college life, along with studying, I and my friends enjoyed a lot of other things. We traveled to lots of places, had new experiences, and learned many new things.

Why did you choose this course? ›

Include information about your skills and natural talents in your answer. Consider mentioning how your skills align with the subject matter. Focus on your unique strengths that could contribute to your success in the course. Discuss the skills you hope to further develop through the course.

What do you see yourself in 5 years? ›

Tips for Answering 'Where Do You See Yourself in 5 Years? '
  • Show how your professional goals and the job you're applying for align.
  • Focus on the skills you want to learn and get better at.
  • Don't get too specific with job titles or time frames.
  • Never say “I want your job,” “I don't know” or “Not here!”
8 Jul 2022

How do you see yourself 5 years from now? ›

In next five years, I would see myself as a person with more knowledge and experience and look for new opportunities which will improve my skills and enhance my knowledge I think that working in your organization will improve my experience and expertise.

What is your strength best answer? ›

My greatest strength is my written communication skills. My greatest strength is administering assistance. See, transferable skills (those in blue) are things you can use at any job in any industry. A good example from our job offer is excellent written communication skills or management skills.

What is your weakness best answer? ›

Answer “what is your greatest weakness” by choosing a skill that is not essential to the job you're applying to and by stressing exactly how you're practically addressing your weakness. Some skills that you can use as weaknesses include impatience, multitasking, self-criticism, and procrastination.

What motivates you in your work? ›

A great work environment

“The workplace environment often has the biggest impact on how motivated you are at work. You thrive when you are part of an upbeat, supportive environment that gets you "in the zone" that you need to be in so that you succeed.

How learning will help me to become successful and lead effectively? ›

learning help us to gain knowledge which we can use in our future. now it may be disgusting but in future it will definitely help us to become successful. for this we have to work hard now and learn so that in future we can lead effectively. in this way lerning will help you to become successful and lead effectively.

How can you develop a student friendly and motivating environment? ›

Top 5 Strategies for Motivating Students
  1. Promote growth mindset over fixed mindset. ...
  2. Develop meaningful and respectful relationships with your students. ...
  3. Grow a community of learners in your classroom. ...
  4. Establish high expectations and establish clear goals. ...
  5. Be inspirational.
4 Jun 2018

How can students improve discipline? ›

Promoting Good Methods of Classroom Discipline
  1. Know school guidelines for discipline procedures.
  2. Be fair, positive and consistent. ...
  3. Provide a list of standards and consequences to parents and students. ...
  4. Keep your classroom orderly. ...
  5. Get to know your students. ...
  6. Let the students know you care.


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