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Yaman Yener Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA Middle East Technical University June 6, 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Yaman Yener Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA Middle East Technical University June 6, 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Yaman Yener Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA Middle East Technical University June 6, 2012

2 Graduate Education in U.S. History The roots of graduate education in the US predate by more than a century the formation of the Nation.


4 Sputnik 1 was the first artificial satellite to be put into Earth's orbit. It was launched into an elliptical low Earth orbit by the Soviet Union on 4 October 1957. Federal funding of the S&E education and research grew rapidly in the late 1950s after the launching of Sputnik in 1957 and passage of the National Defense Education Act in 1958.

5 Graduate Education in U.S. Enrollment Trends An average 3.3% annual increase in total graduate enrollment occurred since fall 2000.

6 Highest degree attained in 2003 by 1992-93 bachelors degree recipients

7 ~75% in masters programs, ~25% in doctoral programs Total Graduate Enrollment by Degree Level, Fall 2010 (~1.75million)

8 The composition of graduate students has been changing, resulting in more diverse campuses. In 2010, women represented ~60% of the first-time 445,000 graduate enrollment across all fields.

9 Total Graduate Enrollment by Gender, Fall 2010 ~1,024,000 women (~59%), ~722,00 men (~41%) Since the mid-1980s, the number of women in graduate schools has continued to exceed the number of men.

10 In 2010, ~615,000 S&E graduate students (~35% of total) ~52% of them women Engineering (~22%) Math & Computer sciences (~29%) Physical & Earth Sciences (~37%)... Health Sciences (~80%) Social & Behavioral Sciences (~64%) Biological & Agricultural Sciences (~54%)

11 Since 1998, an average annual increase of ~ 4% was seen for all minority groups enrolling in graduate schools. Total Graduate Enrollment by Race/Ethnicity, Fall 2010 26.2% ~386,000 minority students (~22% of total enrollment)

12 In 2010, in S&E fields, ~111,000 minority students ~29% of total minority students ~18% of total S&E students ~6.3% of total grad students Concentration of was highest in health sciences (~32%), followed by soc. & behav. sciences (~28%). Smallest in physical & earth sciences (~4.5%). Engineering (~15%)

13 ~245,000 Temporary Residents (~14%) Total Graduate Enrollment by Citizenship, Fall 2010 In S&E fields, ~145,000 temporary residents (59% of all temporary residents)

14 In 2010, in S&E fields, Concentration of foreign students was highest in engineering (~39%), followed by math. & comp. sciences (~19%). They accounted for the smallest shares in health sciences (~6.4%) India and China accounted for ~ of foreign students. South Korea, Taiwan, and Turkey also sent large number of students.

15 Growth in the number of grad. students has not been uniform across fields. In S&E fields,enrolments started to decline in the mid-1990s, but have been consistently rising in the 21 st century and are now at an all-time high. In Engineering, enrollment has been rising steadily in the last 20 years. Most of this growth has resulted from the enrollment of international students. Modest growth for minority students. Slight declines for white men and women.

16 Graduate Education in U.S. Graduate Degrees

17 A 31% increase in the number of eng. degrees, and A 22% increase in social science degrees. Masters-level education has been experiencing growth. Masters degrees in eng. and comp. sciences declined between 2004 and 2007, but have since increased.

18 Between 2000 and 2009, the number S&E masters degrees earned by women grew slightly faster. In 2000, women earned 43% of all S&E masters degrees. In 2009, they earned 45%. In 2009, women earned a majority of masters degrees in psychology, biological sciences, and social sciences and a smaller share of masters degrees in engineering.

19 The number of S&E masters degrees increased for all racial/ethnic groups. For foreign students reached 36,000 in 2009, after a sharp decline between 2004 and 2007. In 2009, foreign students earned 27% of S&E masters degrees. In computer sciences (46%), economics (45%), and engineering (43%).

20 Professional masters degree programs, Relatively new direction in graduate education, Stress interdisciplinary training, and Prepare students for careers in business, government, and nonprofit organizations. Many masters programs have moved away from having an A&S focus and become professional programs. This shift is one of the major factors contributing to the rapid growth in masters-level programs.


22 The number of S&E doctorates awarded annually increased rapidly between 2003-07, but growth slowed in 2008, and the number declined slightly to 41,100 in 2009. The largest increases during the 2000–09 period were in engineering, biological sciences, and life sciences.

23 The number of S&E doctoral degrees earned by U.S. citizen and permanent residents increased, Women - 8,700 (2000) to 15,000 (2009) Men - 10,700 (2000) to 12,800 (2009) In 2009, women earned > ½ of doctorates in non-S&E fields, social sciences, and life sciences. But, fewer doctorates degrees in physical sciences (33%), mathematics/computer sciences (26%), and engineering (25%).

24 The number of doctoral degrees in S&E fields earned by minorities increased between 2000 and 2009. They accounted for 7% of all S&E doctoral degrees earned in 2009, up from 6% in 2000. Foreign students earned ~13,400 S&E doctoral degrees in 2009, up from 8,500 in 2000. In 2009, they earned half or more of doctoral degrees in engineering, physics, computer sciences, and economics.


26 The vast majority of graduate students fail to complete a doctoral degree - A serious concern. The attrition rate in doctoral education is ~ 40% to 50%. Financial support is the most significant factor for the completion of the doctoral degree. Even among doctoral students who are awarded very competitive graduate research fellowships, such as those from the Graduate Research Fellowship Program of NSF, the dropout rate is still a problem, being about 25% among this rigorously selected set of students.

27 Graduate Education in U.S. International Competition and Globalization

28 Int. doctoral students make up 24% of the total grad. population Worldwide average 19% In 2004-05, over 100,000 int. doctoral students were enrolled in the U.S. United Kingdom (the next closest country): ~ 20,000 The U.S. has been the dominant nation in attracting int. grad. students The dominant position of U.S. grad. education is now threatened as the rest of the world rapidly catches up. International Competition

29 Many countries have come to regard movement toward a knowledge-based economy as key to economic progress. They have invested in upgrading and expanding their higher education systems and broadening participation.

30 International Students (Grad. & UG) in Higher Education Total: 1.9 MTotal: 2.9 M The growing competition points to the need for changes in U.S. graduate education so that the U.S. does not fall behind in its production of graduate degree recipients.

31 Globalization – Transnational Higher Education Why globalization? Enormous demand in the emerging world. Advances in technology have opened up new and potentially low-cost possibilities to connect to these students. Opportunities to innovate in ways that are not possible at home and to enrich the research enterprise. New markets could be a great source of revenue. Opportunity for foreign students to earn a Western degree.

32 In 2009, 162 int. branch campuses, with 78 U.S. institutions, followed by Australia (14), the UK(13),... The Australians and the British were there before the US. U.S. grad. schools are more likely to have established dual/joint degree programs with higher education institutions in Europe, with China and India in second place. The most common fields for dual degrees: At the masters level are business, engineering, and the social sciences At the doctoral level, they are engineering and physical sciences.

33 Venturing into a new country, meeting enrollment and financial goals without diluting quality standards is often a challenge. Some US institutions have been successful, but Some are struggling for students. A number of them closed their branch campuses. Some well-known universities have been asked to leave a country. Following the closures of several branch campuses, higher education institutions have become more aware of the long- term risks involved and more frequently look for sponsors or partners to share and reduce such risks.

34 Graduate Education in U.S. Path Forward

35 Many bachelor degree recipients never enroll in a graduate program, and many who do enroll leave without a degree. Especially, the rates at which students leave doctoral programs remain a national problem. The numbers of international students enrolled in the US graduate institutions continues to decline as opportunities for quality education in their home countries increase.

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