The U.S. Department of Education has released a new report providing preliminary data on degree awards presented by American institutions of higher learning during the 2015-16 academic year that shows that African Americans earned 334,145 degrees from four-year U.S. higher education institutions in the 2015-16 academic year.
This was 10.2 percent of all degrees from four-year institutions. Currently, African Americans make up 12.6 percent of the United States population.
“Postsecondary Institutions and Cost of Attendance in 2016–17; Degrees and Other Awards Conferred, 2015–16; and 12-Month Enrollment, 2015–16” also shows that African Americans earned 9.5 percent of all degrees from private colleges and universities and 21.8 percent of all degrees from for-profit institutions.
At two-year colleges and universities, African Americans earned 178,157 degrees in the 2015-16 academic year, which was 14 percent of all degrees awarded at two-year institutions.
This report presents findings from the preliminary data of the IPEDS fall 2016 data collection. The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) collects institution-level data from postsecondary institutions in the United States (50 states and the District of Columbia) and other U.S. jurisdictions.
The report shows that African Americans earned 81,347 master’s degrees during the 2015-16 academic year, which was 10.4 percent of all master’s degrees. Black women earned 70 percent of all master’s degrees earned by African Americans.
Blacks earned 5,264 doctoral degrees in research fields. This was 7.8 percent of all research doctorates. African Americans earned 6,911 doctoral degrees in professional practice fields, 6.5 percent of all doctorates in professional fields. Black women earned more than 65 percent of all doctorates awarded to African Americans.