With student enrollment declining at historic levels, higher education institutions continue to struggle with student retention. Now, between mounting financial pressures and increased competition, it’s never been more critical for institutions to prioritize student retention and implement interventions that drive student success and completion.
Download our infographic, 5 Student Retention Strategies in Higher Education, to address these questions:
- What are the major causes of attrition?
- How can we identify at-risk students?
- What are the costs of not addressing attrition?
- Which best practices will help keep our students enrolled?
In fall 2021, retention rates increased slightly to 66.4%, (up from 66.2% in fall 2020), but remain lower than before the pandemic.
Today’s college students have more reasons than ever to leave without graduating, including rising tuition and student debt, academic challenges, and mental and physical health concerns. But keeping students engaged and enrolled requires a concrete, measurable strategy — one informed by best practices that directly addresses the causes of student attrition.
While the retention challenge may seem daunting, it’s possible to identify which students are most at risk of attrition, whether it’s due to their academic circumstances or non-academic factors, such as their sense of belonging on campus.
Following these indicators of attrition closely allows colleges and universities to implement internal operations that affect the entire student body and develop programs that target select individuals or groups who may benefit from additional interventions or support. A focus on both approaches will help higher education institutions ensure they are creating an environment that supports success for all students and has safeguards in place to keep more vulnerable students on track.
To increase their retention rates, institutions should focus on building concrete and measurable strategies that directly address the causes of student attrition.