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Retention and Graduation Rates

Matriculating into a college is one thing, returning your sophomore year in good standing and then successfully pushing through to a diploma is quite another. Nationwide, the average retention rate (students who return for sophomore year) is 78%. Graduation rates are measured by: 1) the percentage of students that complete their degree; and 2) how long it takes to do so. Our list of retention and graduation rates at 396 of the nation’s top colleges and universities will show you each institution’s retention rate as well as what percentage of their student body graduates in four, five, and six years. A high retention and four-year graduation rate are indicators of quality undergraduate education.

Data was collected from each institution's Common Data Set for 2020-21. Graduation rates were collected from the Fall 2014 cohort and retention rates measured students who enrolled in Fall 2019 and returned for Fall 2020.

Table updated October 2021

InstitutionFreshman Retention RateGraduation Rate (4-Year)Graduation Rate (5-Year)Graduation Rate (6-Year)
Adelphi University80%62%71%71%
Agnes Scott College84%68%72%70%
Albion College77%58%66%65%
Alfred University70%46%59%58%
Allegheny College83%68%72%74%
American University88%73%78%79%
Amherst College95%85%93%94%
Appalachian State University87%54%70%73%
Arizona State University86%51%64%69%
Assumption College83%70%73%72%
Auburn University91%51%74%78%
Augustana College86%73%76%74%
Austin College81%66%70%70%
Babson College95%90%93%93%
Ball State University78%54%65%64%
Bard College83%62%72%75%
Barnard College94%85%89%92%
Bates College93%90%92%91%
Baylor University90%64%78%78%
Belmont University83%59%70%72%
Beloit College83%68%75%80%
Bennington College78%61%70%72%
Bentley University92%84%89%90%
Berea College84%50%66%66%
Berry College82%63%69%67%
Binghamton University91%72%81%82%
Birmingham Southern College79%65%70%68%
Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania74%39%55%59%
Boise State University80%29%49%48%
Boston College94%89%91%92%
Boston University93%84%88%88%
Bowdoin College94%91%95%95%
Bowling Green State University78%44%58%57%
Bradley University85%59%74%76%
Brandeis University92%82%88%88%
Brigham Young University-Provo90%21%43%80%
Brown University96%84%94%95%
Bryant University89%79%82%81%
Bryn Mawr College90%80%83%85%
Bucknell University92%84%87%89%
Butler University88%75%81%78%
Cal Poly, Pomona87%30%55%68%
Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo94%53%81%83%
California Institute of Technology97%86%91%92%
California State University, Fresno83%19%46%56%
California State University, Fullerton88%26%58%68%
California State University, Long Beach87%29%64%71%
Canisius College84%64%69%70%
Carleton College96%88%93%93%
Carnegie Mellon University96%80%91%90%
Case Western Reserve University93%64%82%84%
Catholic University of America87%68%74%74%
Central Michigan University77%33%59%61%
Centre College90%82%83%82%
Chapman University89%73%79%80%
Christopher Newport University86%70%78%76%
Citadel Military College of South Carolina86%65%70%73%
Claremont McKenna College94%81%91%92%
Clark University86%70%74%78%
Clarkson University89%65%76%76%
Clemson University93%63%82%84%
Coastal Carolina University69%32%44%45%
Colby College93%89%90%90%
Colgate University94%85%90%90%
College of Charleston80%57%65%68%
College of Saint Benedict88%80%85%82%
College of the Holy Cross93%90%92%92%
College of William and Mary94%85%90%91%
Colorado College93%82%87%87%
Colorado School of Mines92%65%82%81%
Colorado State University85%47%67%70%
Columbia University98%86%94%96%
Connecticut College90%78%81%83%
Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art91%66%76%85%
Cornell College78%65%67%70%
Cornell University97%89%94%94%
Creighton University90%71%79%78%
CUNY Bernard M Baruch College89%45%68%70%
CUNY Brooklyn College82%28%49%56%
CUNY City College84%24%52%55%
CUNY Hunter College85%27%50%55%
CUNY Lehman College82%28%47%50%
Dartmouth College97%87%93%95%
Davidson College94%89%93%91%
Denison University89%77%80%83%
DePaul University84%58%69%72%
DePauw University89%85%87%84%
Dickinson College88%81%84%84%
Drake University86%63%69%78%
Drew University86%64%68%66%
Drexel University89%Not ReportedNot Reported71%
Duke University97%90%94%95%
Duquesne University85%69%76%78%
Earlham College81%58%62%65%
East Carolina University82%42%62%65%
Eastern Connecticut State University78%45%54%56%
Eastern Kentucky University75%33%49%50%
Eckerd College80%59%64%67%
Elizabethtown College88%68%72%72%
Elon University90%79%82%84%
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University80%34%56%61%
Emerson College86%75%78%80%
Emory University94%82%89%90%
Endicott College84%75%77%76%
Fairfield University90%80%82%82%
Fitchburg State University76%38%55%59%
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University82%21%46%52%
Florida Atlantic University82%34%52%52%
Florida Gulf Coast University80%29%51%50%
Florida Institute of Technology80%43%57%60%
Florida International University90%38%60%61%
Florida Southern College81%62%68%66%
Florida State University94%72%83%82%
Fordham University90%79%82%82%
Franklin and Marshall College90%81%84%85%
Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering99%80%94%96%
Furman University89%75%80%81%
George Mason University87%48%66%71%
George Washington University91%79%84%82%
Georgetown College68%50%55%53%
Georgetown University96%90%94%94%
Georgia College84%48%60%64%
Georgia Institute of Technology97%47%86%88%
Georgia Southern University79%29%49%51%
Georgia State University80%29%48%54%
Gettysburg College91%80%83%83%
Gonzaga University94%77%87%86%
Goucher College75%58%64%67%
Grinnell College91%81%86%87%
Grove City College89%82%85%85%
Gustavus Adolphus College88%75%78%78%
Hamilton College94%86%90%93%
Hampshire College73%59%65%64%
Hanover College79%71%72%71%
Harvard University92%86%96%97%
Harvey Mudd College96%84%91%93%
Haverford College94%85%92%92%
Hendrix College85%56%61%70%
High Point University81%65%68%66%
Hillsdale College94%78%87%86%
Hobart William Smith Colleges85%71%76%78%
Hofstra University82%55%63%64%
Hope College90%67%74%79%
Howard University89%52%62%64%
Illinois Institute of Technology90%38%66%72%
Illinois State University81%50%66%69%
Illinois Wesleyan University88%78%81%79%
Indiana University Bloomington91%69%78%78%
Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis74%33%48%49%
Iowa State University88%50%72%74%
Ithaca College83%73%77%77%
James Madison University90%68%81%83%
John Carroll University86%67%74%77%
Johns Hopkins University98%89%93%93%
Juniata College84%77%79%80%
Kalamazoo College88%72%76%82%
Kansas State University86%40%63%65%
Kent State University at Kent81%45%60%60%
Kenyon College90%86%88%89%
Kettering University92%10%52%64%
Knox College83%61%69%74%
La Salle University75%57%65%67%
Lafayette College92%86%89%89%
Lake Forest College86%69%75%73%
Lawrence University87%63%77%80%
Lehigh University94%79%87%88%
Lewis & Clark College82%69%73%76%
Linfield College-McMinnville Campus81%63%73%73%
Louisiana State University84%43%65%66%
Loyola Marymount University88%75%81%82%
Loyola University Chicago85%69%75%75%
Loyola University Maryland87%77%80%81%
Lycoming College76%52%61%66%
Macalester College93%88%92%90%
Manhattan College83%55%69%72%
Marist College88%77%84%84%
Marquette University88%67%82%83%
Marshall University74%29%45%49%
Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts72%45%52%56%
Massachusetts Institute of Technology99%87%95%95%
Massachusetts Maritime Academy87%69%82%77%
McDaniel College78%52%62%66%
Mercer University87%62%72%67%
Mercyhurst University79%63%69%68%
Merrimack College83%70%73%72%
Messiah College88%75%78%79%
Miami University90%71%80%80%
Michigan State University92%58%79%80%
Michigan Technological University84%30%64%69%
Middlebury College94%87%92%93%
Millersville University of Pennsylvania76%36%53%59%
Millsaps College75%66%67%68%
Milwaukee School of Engineering84%48%65%69%
Mississippi State University81%40%60%60%
Missouri University of Science and Technology83%24%59%65%
Monmouth University80%64%73%72%
Montana State University77%29%50%56%
Montclair State University81%45%65%68%
Moravian College82%66%69%67%
Morehouse College82%33%46%54%
Mount Holyoke College89%80%84%84%
Muhlenberg College89%80%82%84%
Murray State University78%34%50%53%
New College of Florida80%56%62%63%
New Jersey Institute of Technology88%41%65%66%
New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology76%30%49%52%
New Mexico State University-Main Campus75%26%46%48%
New York Institute of Technology76%Not ReportedNot Reported51%
New York University93%79%86%86%
Niagara University84%71%77%72%
North Carolina State University94%59%82%82%
North Dakota State University-Main Campus80%38%57%60%
Northeastern University97%Not ReportedNot Reported88%
Northern Arizona University76%42%54%55%
Northern Michigan University76%28%45%51%
Northwestern University98%85%94%94%
Norwich University80%50%55%60%
Oakland University77%31%51%54%
Oberlin College88%77%85%86%
Occidental College89%78%83%85%
Ohio State University94%65%84%85%
Ohio University81%48%63%65%
Ohio Wesleyan University79%60%65%67%
Oklahoma State University83%44%60%63%
Old Dominion University79%27%47%53%
Oregon Institute of Technology79%18%40%44%
Oregon State University85%41%64%67%
Pennsylvania State University - University Park93%70%84%86%
Pepperdine University89%80%87%86%
Pitzer College90%75%81%84%
Pomona College94%89%93%94%
Portland State University73%26%43%48%
Presbyterian College78%53%61%66%
Princeton University94%90%96%97%
Providence College92%82%84%86%
Purdue University92%60%79%81%
Quinnipiac University86%73%76%74%
Ramapo College of New Jersey86%60%70%73%
Randolph-Macon College85%61%65%66%
Reed College89%68%78%81%
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute92%74%85%85%
Rhode Island School of Design92%72%88%89%
Rhodes College90%79%81%82%
Rice University97%85%93%93%
Ripon College76%60%66%68%
Roanoke College80%64%68%68%
Rochester Institute of Technology88%26%65%70%
Roger Williams University82%62%67%68%
Rollins College86%74%80%76%
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology90%77%84%85%
Rowan University84%48%64%70%
Rutgers University-Camden86%38%61%62%
Rutgers University-New Brunswick93%67%81%82%
Rutgers University-Newark86%34%59%66%
Sacred Heart University84%67%72%72%
Saint Anselm College90%74%78%78%
Saint Johns University86%69%73%75%
Saint Joseph's University89%75%80%81%
Saint Louis University90%71%78%78%
Saint Mary's College84%78%80%79%
Saint Mary's College of California84%62%70%75%
Saint Michael's College84%72%74%78%
Salem State University74%43%57%56%
Salisbury University81%50%66%70%
Salve Regina University84%73%75%74%
Sam Houston State University77%34%53%54%
Samford University88%66%75%76%
San Diego State University89%48%73%75%
San Francisco State University80%25%49%55%
San Jose State University86%19%54%63%
Santa Clara University94%88%91%91%
Sarah Lawrence College79%67%71%76%
Scripps College89%81%87%88%
Seattle University85%63%72%74%
Seton Hall University84%65%71%70%
Siena College88%76%80%78%
Simmons University83%76%79%78%
Skidmore College91%83%86%87%
Smith College89%82%86%88%
Soka University of America93%80%83%90%
Sonoma State University78%35%57%61%
South Dakota State University78%41%56%57%
Southern Connecticut State University75%30%48%50%
Southern Methodist University91%73%80%80%
Southwestern University85%66%72%72%
Spelman College89%65%72%75%
St Bonaventure University85%69%73%71%
St John's University-New York83%47%55%62%
St Lawrence University90%76%80%83%
St Olaf College91%82%85%86%
St. John's College (MD)84%64%66%70%
St. John's College (NM)72%47%62%64%
St. Mary's College of Maryland84%63%70%77%
Stanford University96%74%90%94%
State University of New York at New Paltz86%62%74%75%
Stetson University77%57%63%63%
Stevens Institute of Technology94%53%86%86%
Stockton University85%58%72%74%
Stonehill College85%74%81%81%
Stony Brook University90%63%74%74%
Suffolk University76%45%57%59%
SUNY at Albany82%58%64%64%
SUNY at Fredonia74%49%61%63%
SUNY at Purchase College81%53%60%63%
SUNY College at Brockport76%50%63%65%
SUNY College at Geneseo85%69%77%79%
SUNY College at Oswego78%52%64%66%
SUNY College at Plattsburgh78%47%65%66%
SUNY College at Potsdam76%37%48%55%
SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry78%Not ReportedNot Reported77%
SUNY Cortland81%52%66%70%
SUNY Oneonta83%66%75%75%
Susquehanna University86%70%73%72%
Swarthmore College95%91%97%95%
Syracuse University90%71%82%83%
Temple University89%55%71%73%
Tennessee Technological University77%35%52%54%
Texas A & M University-College Station92%57%81%82%
Texas Christian University92%70%81%83%
Texas State University77%31%50%54%
The College of New Jersey94%75%85%86%
The College of Wooster86%70%74%76%
The University of Montana70%30%44%49%
The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga74%32%47%48%
The University of Tennessee-Knoxville87%51%68%72%
The University of Texas at Arlington74%28%46%50%
The University of Texas at Austin96%70%85%85%
The University of Texas at Dallas88%54%69%71%
The University of the South88%76%79%80%
Towson University85%48%70%72%
Transylvania University82%70%74%74%
Trinity College90%78%82%82%
Trinity University90%67%77%78%
Truman State University85%61%73%74%
Tufts University95%89%93%94%
Tulane University93%77%84%85%
Union College92%80%86%85%
United States Air Force Academy94%85%87%84%
United States Coast Guard Academy96%85%85%84%
United States Merchant Marine Academy94%69%77%82%
United States Military Academy97%81%84%85%
United States Naval Academy96%89%90%91%
University at Buffalo87%59%72%75%
University of Akron Main Campus73%26%48%48%
University of Alabama87%52%70%71%
University of Alabama at Birmingham84%38%56%59%
University of Arizona83%49%62%64%
University of Arkansas84%50%66%66%
University of California, Berkeley97%76%90%92%
University of California, Davis92%63%84%86%
University of California, Irvine94%69%83%84%
University of California, Los Angeles96%81%90%91%
University of California, Merced83%45%66%67%
University of California, Riverside90%62%75%76%
University of California, San Diego94%68%84%86%
University of California, Santa Barbara93%71%86%84%
University of California, Santa Cruz88%55%73%76%
University of Central Florida91%46%68%72%
University of Chicago99%91%94%94%
University of Cincinnati87%37%68%70%
University of Colorado Boulder87%50%69%70%
University of Connecticut94%73%81%84%
University of Dallas83%62%68%68%
University of Dayton90%63%79%80%
University of Delaware90%73%83%83%
University of Denver86%67%74%76%
University of Florida97%67%87%88%
University of Georgia95%68%84%86%
University of Houston85%36%56%59%
University of Idaho79%37%56%57%
University of Illinois at Chicago80%37%59%60%
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign93%72%84%85%
University of Iowa86%54%70%73%
University of Kansas85%46%60%64%
University of Kentucky85%47%63%66%
University of Louisiana at Lafayette75%22%44%48%
University of Louisville80%37%56%58%
University of Maine76%40%53%58%
University of Mary Washington81%55%64%67%
University of Maryland, Baltimore County87%44%64%68%
University of Maryland, College Park95%70%85%86%
University of Massachusetts Amherst90%76%82%80%
University of Massachusetts Boston76%25%43%48%
University of Massachusetts Lowell84%44%66%64%
University of Memphis77%28%45%49%
University of Miami92%72%82%83%
University of Michigan97%81%92%92%
University of Michigan-Dearborn81%18%46%55%
University of Minnesota-Duluth79%43%59%60%
University of Minnesota-Morris78%46%58%61%
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities93%71%83%82%
University of Mississippi86%48%64%64%
University of Missouri-Columbia88%50%71%70%
University of Nebraska-Lincoln84%42%64%67%
University of Nevada-Las Vegas77%17%36%44%
University of Nevada-Reno81%37%56%59%
University of New Hampshire86%69%75%77%
University of New Mexico76%34%51%51%
University of North Carolina at Asheville74%47%60%62%
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill96%86%91%90%
University of North Carolina at Charlotte83%38%61%60%
University of North Carolina at Greensboro77%46%57%56%
University of North Carolina Wilmington85%57%72%73%
University of North Dakota80%35%57%58%
University of North Florida82%39%56%60%
University of North Georgia79%31%48%54%
University of North Texas79%38%54%55%
University of Northern Colorado71%33%49%50%
University of Northern Iowa84%41%60%66%
University of Notre Dame98%93%96%96%
University of Oklahoma89%46%68%69%
University of Oregon85%58%71%73%
University of Pennsylvania97%86%94%96%
University of Pittsburgh93%69%82%83%
University of Portland88%76%83%82%
University of Puget Sound81%68%75%77%
University of Redlands82%65%72%74%
University of Rhode Island85%53%66%68%
University of Richmond94%85%88%88%
University of Rochester95%76%84%86%
University of San Diego89%69%79%81%
University of San Francisco82%63%71%74%
University of Scranton88%74%81%81%
University of South Carolina89%65%76%76%
University of South Dakota77%43%57%58%
University of South Florida92%59%71%74%
University of Southern California95%79%90%92%
University of St Thomas87%70%79%78%
University of Tampa77%49%57%59%
University of the Pacific84%45%59%67%
University of Toledo76%31%50%48%
University of Tulsa87%56%72%72%
University of Utah90%34%57%68%
University of Vermont86%64%75%76%
University of Virginia-Main Campus97%89%94%94%
University of Washington94%68%82%84%
University of Washington-Bothell Campus85%45%65%65%
University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire82%40%65%67%
University of Wisconsin-La Crosse85%44%68%70%
University of Wisconsin-Madison95%67%87%88%
University of Wyoming78%33%54%58%
Ursinus College86%71%73%78%
Valparaiso University82%56%65%70%
Vanderbilt University97%88%92%93%
Vassar College95%82%87%90%
Villanova University96%89%91%91%
Virginia Commonwealth University84%44%62%66%
Virginia Military Institute85%76%83%80%
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University93%65%83%85%
Wabash College87%72%74%74%
Wagner College80%66%70%70%
Wake Forest University94%85%88%88%
Warren Wilson College62%Not ReportedNot Reported48%
Washington & Jefferson College84%64%67%72%
Washington and Lee University97%91%93%94%
Washington College82%70%71%72%
Washington State University80%37%54%60%
Washington University in St. Louis96%88%93%94%
Wayne State University80%24%44%48%
Wellesley College95%86%93%92%
Wentworth Institute of Technology82%54%66%69%
Wesleyan University94%87%91%90%
West Chester University of Pennsylvania85%55%73%75%
West Virginia University78%Not ReportedNot Reported59%
Western Carolina University80%56%57%58%
Western Michigan University79%27%49%54%
Western Washington University81%38%63%68%
Westmont College80%72%72%75%
Wheaton College (IL)92%79%87%88%
Wheaton College (MA)86%72%77%77%
Whitman College86%79%85%88%
Whittier College76%59%62%68%
Whitworth University83%66%76%76%
Wichita State University72%25%42%48%
Widener University80%53%63%62%
Willamette University84%69%73%72%
Williams College96%89%95%95%
Winthrop University73%46%59%59%
Wofford College90%76%80%82%
Worcester Polytechnic Institute95%81%88%88%
Xavier University84%61%67%71%
Yale University90%84%95%97%
Yeshiva University92%69%76%81%
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