Student Achievement Data
SACSCOC Institutional Obligations for Public Disclosure
The linked documents below contain Dalton State College's public disclosure of its goals for student achievement and student success in reaching those goals:
Institutional Mission regarding Goal Statement for Student Achievement
Student Achievement Data
Core Requirement 8.1 of the Principles of Accreditation: Foundation for Quality Enhancement, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) states,
"The institution identifies, evaluates, and publishes goals and outcomes for student achievement appropriate to the institution's mission, the nature of the students it serves, and the kinds of programs offered. The institution uses multiple measures to document student success."
Dalton State College has selected the five measures listed below, with the National Student Clearinghouse Total Completions Rate having been identified as the Key Student Completion Indicator for SACSCOC reporting. For each measure, the College has identified the rationale for inclusion, recent performance, a target for the next year, and a longer-term goal, along with some additional explanations.
National Student Clearinghouse Total Completions Rate
The National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) Total Completions Rate (TCR) is compiled by the NSC and reflects the proportion of all students who begin at Dalton State College in a particular fall term and complete any college credential at any institution within six years.The definition of the cohort is distinct from other cohort definitions, such as those used for IPEDS reporting. While the TCR includes information about the students who appear in traditional graduation rate metrics, who initially enroll full-time and graduate at their initially-enrolled degree level from their initially-enrolled institution, the TCR also includes information about students who initially enroll part-time, switch between degree levels without first obtaining a degree at their initially-enrolled level, and/or transfer out of the institution and earn a credential at another institution. Dalton State College offers three different levels of undergraduate credentials with its certificate, associate, and baccalaureate programs, so students switching between degree levels is a regular occurrence. Additionally, Dalton State College maintains several associate degree transfer pathways within its AA General Studies and AS General Studies programs, with students frequently moving into our own baccalaureate programs or transferring to other institutions before completing the associate credential. As such, Dalton State believes that the Total Completions Rate best captures how well it is achieving its mission to provide "opportunities to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to attain affordable baccalaureate degrees, associate degrees and certificates and to reach their personal and professional goals."
|Cohort||Fall 2013||Fall 2014||Fall 2015||Fall 2016|
Dalton State College has established a long-term goal of having a TCR at or above 42.4% for the Fall 2020 cohort. In setting this long-term goal and the short-term target included above, the institution incorporated data that includes decreasing retention (students staying at the same institution one year later) and persistence (students enrolling at any higher-education institution one year later) rates and impacts of the pandemic on these rates. While official NSC data related to persistence is not yet available for the Fall 2020 cohort, other data available to the institution suggests that this cohort will have a significantly lower persistence rate. Once the official NSC persistence data is available for the Fall 2020 cohort, we plan to revise that goal accordingly.
Three-Year Associate Graduation Rate
As an associate-degree granting institution, Dalton State College tracks its three-year graduation rate for its associate-seeking cohorts following IPEDS definitions (first-time full-time degree-seeking students). This reflects the proportion of all students who start their college enrollment as students at Dalton State College enrolled full-time in an associate-level degree program that complete an associate degree at Dalton State College within three years.
|Cohort||Fall 2015||Fall 2016||Fall 2017||Fall 2018||Fall 2019||Fall 2020|
Dalton State College has established a long-term goal of having a three-year associate graduation rate of 15.0% for the Fall 2024 cohort. In establishing the targets for the Fall 2019 and Fall 2020 cohorts, the institution considered both the recent trend of decreasing one-year retention rates and the pandemic. In establishing the goal for the Fall 2024 cohort, the institution incorporated goals for increasing retention.
Particular challenges related to this metric include students transferring out or switching to DSC baccalaureate program before earning the associates degree and students who transition into one of DSC's selective associates programs in Health Professions, which have pre-program requirements that students must complete and strict course sequences spanning two years following entry into the program.
*The Fall 2016 cohort had a surprisingly low three-year associate graduation rate. No clear cause for this has been identified, and the following three years had the highest rates since the mid-2000s. A similar dip has been seen in the Fall 2016 bachelor's-seeking cohort's six-year graduation rate and we are curious to see if this appears in the Total Completions rate as well.
Six-Year Bachelor's Graduation Rate
As a bachelor's-degree granting institution, Dalton State College tracks its six-year graduation rate for its bachelor's-seeking cohorts following IPEDS definitions (first-time full-time degree-seeking students). This reflects the proportion of all students who start their college enrollment as students at Dalton State College enrolled full-time in a baccalaureate-level degree program that complete a bachelor's degree within six years.
|Cohort||Fall 2012||Fall 2013||Fall 2014||Fall 2015||Fall 2016||Fall 2017|
Dalton State College has established a long-term goal of having a six-year bachelor's graduation rate of 29.0% for the Fall 2021 cohort. In establishing the targets for the Fall 2016 and Fall 2017 cohorts, the institution considered both the recent trend of decreasing one-year retention rates and the pandemic. In establishing the goal for the Fall 2021 cohort, the institution incorporated goals for increasing retention.
*The Fall 2016 cohort had a surprisingly low six-year bachelor's graduation rate. No clear cause for this has been identified, and the Fall 2017 bachelor's-seeking cohort's five-year bachelor's graduation rate already stands at 25.6%, so this seems like a singular occurrence. A similar dip had been seen in the Fall 2016 associate-seeking cohort's three-year graduation rate and we are curious to see if this appears in the Total Completions rate as well.
One-Year Retention Rate
Dalton State College tracks its one-year retention rates for both first-time full-time associate-seeking and first-time full-time bachelor's seeking students, but is using the one-year retention rate for all first-time full-time degree-seeking students due to the frequency at which students switch between degree levels. This rate measures the proportion of students who enroll as first-time full-time degree-seeking students in a particular fall semester and then either enroll in the following fall semester or graduate from their degree program by the following fall semester. The latter situation is possible in one-year certificate programs or for students who were dual enrollment students and accumulated a significant number of credits before their high school graduations and thus were first-time full-time students with many already-earned credits.
|Cohort||Fall 2017||Fall 2018||Fall 2019||Fall 2020||Fall 2021||Fall 2022|
Dalton State College has established a long-term goal of having a one-year retention rate for all first-time full-time degree-seeking students of 68.0% for the Fall 2026 cohort, slightly higher than the five-year average for pre-pandemic cohorts. In establishing the targets for the Fall 2021 and Fall 2022 cohorts, the institution considered both the recent trend of decreasing one-year retention rates and the pandemic as well as efforts to stop and reverse that trend. In establishing the goal for the Fall 2026 cohort, the institution seeks gradually increasing retention rates as a result of efforts directed toward that end.
Licensure and Certification Exam Pass Rates
Licensure and certification exams play an important role in employment opportunities for graduates in education and health professions. While health professions appears in both Dalton State College's 2020-2024 strategic plan and the University System of Georgia's Strategic Plan 2024, staffing shortages in education and health professions are national concerns. Dalton State College wants to ensure that its graduates in these fields are prepared to succeed in their licensure and certification exams so that they can progress into associated careers.
Each program has established a benchmark, which in most cases is a minimum requirement established by a program accrediting agency or a related state agency. Several programs have higher targets or also benchmark against national and/or state pass rates which are variable on an annual basis, and all have the goal of having 100% pass rates. The fixed benchmarks for each program are listed in the second column of the table below.
All percentages in this table are rounded to the nearest whole percent.
|Program and Exam||Benchmark||2017||2018||2019||2020||2021|
|CERT Licensed Practical Nursing
National Council Licensure Exam - PN
|AAS Medical Laboratory Technology
Medical Laboratory Technician Exam
|AAS Radiologic Technology
American Registry of Radiologic Technologists Exam
|AAS Respiratory Therapy
Therapist Multiple-Choice Exam
National Council Licensure Exam - RN
|BSEd Elementary Education
Georgia Assessment for the Certification of Educators
The GACE results are compiled for the 12-month period ending August 31 of the specified year and ARRT results are compiled for the 12-month period ending May 31 of the specified year. All other results are compiled on a calendar year basis.
*A high-cut pass on the TMC Exam is required for an individual to be eligible to sit for the Clinical Simulation Exam, which must be passed to obtain Registered Respiratory Therapist status. Tracking of high-cut pass rates began in 2020.
**The COVID-19 pandemic is suspected as a significant cause for the below-threshold performance on the NCLEX-PN exam in 2020. The rebound of the scores in 2021 seems to indicate that this was a singular occurrence, but monitoring will continue.
- Georgia Higher Learning and Earnings
- IPEDS Reports
- Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) reports provide annual institution-level data on Dalton State College's student enrollment, graduation rates, student charges, program completions, faculty, staff and finances.
- State of Georgia Governor's Office of Student Achievement