UW-Madison graduation rates increase to record levels

UW-Madison graduation
WISC-TV/Channel3000

MADISON, Wis. — UW-Madison says its graduation rates are reaching levels never seen before.

The university’s Office of Academic Planning and Institutional Research says its six-year graduation rate has risen to 89.2%, up from 88.5% last year. That’s more than 8% higher than the average 81.1% graduation rate of the university’s peers and puts it in the top 10 of public research universities.

UW-Madison’s four-year graduation rate also increased from 71.2% to 71.8% in the last year. The university’s four-year graduation rate has grown more than 10% in the last six years and is also significantly higher than the 64.9% peer average.

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The university says its average time-to-degree rate is lower than four calendar years for the third year in a row. Undergrads at UW-Madison are now taking an average of 3.89 years to finish their degrees.

“It’s impressive that all of these metrics — graduation rates, time-to-degree, the retention rate, the number of graduates — continue to be so strong despite the impacts of a global pandemic,” Provost Karl Scholz said in a statement. “This is a good indication of the health of the university, and it could not have happened without the extra efforts of our faculty and staff and the hard work of our students during this exceptionally challenging time.”

UW-Madison says it gave out 11,663 degrees in the last year — including bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorates — the highest number ever recorded at the university.