Student Right to Know: Graduation and Transfer-Out Rates

What is Student Right-To-Know?

Student Right-To-Know is a federal law that requires all colleges and universities to disclose certain information to students. This handout provides the information that a college must provide to students on graduation rates and transfer-out rates for full-time students seeking degrees at Rainy River Community College.

What is a graduation rate and what is a transfer-out rate?

Federal regulations specify how to calculate the graduation and transfer rates. The rates come from a study of Rainy River students who started at the college in the fall of 2015. The study includes all first-time students who enrolled full-time that fall and were seeking to earn a degree at the college. The graduation rate is the percentage of these students who graduated from Rainy River within three years. The transfer-out rate is the percentage of these students who did not graduate from Rainy River, but instead transferred to another college or university within three years.

What do I need to know about these rates?

These rates do not report on all students at Rainy River. The 54 first-time, full-time students in the study were 16 percent of all students enrolled at Rainy River in fall of 2015.

What are the graduation and transfer-out rates for Rainy River students and how do they compare to rates for other colleges?

  • The graduation rate for Rainy River was 33 percent.
  • The transfer-out rate for Rainy River was 26 percent.
  • The combination of the graduation rate and the transfer-out rate for Rainy River was 59 percent. The national average combined rate for similar colleges was 45 percent.

Why don't more Rainy River students graduate or transfer in three years?

  • Since Rainy River has an “open door” mission, many new students need to take “developmental” courses to improve their reading, writing or math skills before taking other college courses;
  • Students who switch from full-time to part-time enrollment or “stop out” for one or more semesters are more likely to take more than three years to graduate;
  • Some students take jobs before they graduate;
  • Other students delay their education for personal, family or financial reasons.

Disaggregated Student Right-to-Know Graduation and Transfer-out Rates