Postsecondary Internet Resources Essay

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Introduction and Methods
I explored some of the postsecondary sites provided in Appendix A of the course syllabus as well as other sites not found in the Appendix. Specifically, I sought to compare graduation rates at my college to graduation rates at other metro area postsecondary institutions with similar programs. I found much of the information I sought using IPEDS (Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System) and MOHE (Minnesota Office of Higher Education). I have not yet taken any statistics courses as part of my program. Therefore, my process and analyses are open to critique. Below I present and analyze statistics related to graduation rates. Next I discuss my experience using these web sites.
Comparing Statistics
Using the three-step data center on the IPEDS web site, I selected my college, Minneapolis Business College (MBC), and several colleges located in the metro area that I knew to have similar diploma and associate degree programs. Several of those institutions did not have data available via IPEDS, a result I discovered only after completing the steps to generate the data. Ultimately, my analysis involved comparing two community/technical colleges—Century College and Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC)—to MBC.
According to IPEDS, in 2006, MBC (257) graduated more students in diploma and two-year programs than Century College (154) and MCTC (221) within 150% of normal completion time. This result was surprising given that, in Fall 2004 and Fall 2005 combined, MBC (591) enrolled a fraction of the full-time, diploma/degree seeking students as Century (2,631) and MCTC (1,874).
According to MOHE, the three-year graduation rate in 2007 for MBC (79.7%) was astronomically higher than for Century Co...

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...s “Data & Research,” for this paper. However, MOHE’s site provided very poor results from queries to its search box. MOHE produces volumes of reports, but its web site does not effectively organize search results. For example, some search results are sorted by format of results, such as PDF. Even knowing the exact report name and publication year I wanted to access—Minnesota Measures (2009)—I could not retrieve it by searching the MOHE site using any combination of these terms. I had to resort to a Google search within MOHE to successfully locate the document.

Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System. IPEDS Data Center [Data set].
Retrieved from
Minnesota Office of Higher Education. (2009). [Electronic Version]. Minnesota
Measures. Retrieved from

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