How many years does the average undergrad student graduate from college?

<p>I meant in how many years does an undergraduate student graduate from college. I know that the minimum credits to get a bachelors is 120, but do most people just do that minimum, or do they usually have to get more than that to graduate?</p>

<p>Your question is totally dependent on the college. At Brown, they simply expect kids to take 32 courses and pass 30. That's 4 per semester. At Northwestern, kids take 4 courses a semester, but it's on a quarterly system, so they generally end up with 12 courses per year. At WashU, kids generally take ~15-18 credits, although you just need 12 credits to be considered full time.</p>

<p>In my own personal experience, my kids will be finishing with about 125-140 courses, which is fairly typical. We make a point to graduate within 4 years because it's important to employers to see you can do it, but colleges honestly don't push it. If anything those requirements are very complicated.</p>

<p>What college do you go to?</p>

<p>I'm at community college right now but I'm looking to transfer to a public state school next fall.</p>

<p>Most take 4 years, some take shorter because they take heavy course loads or come in with tons of AP or dual enrollment credits, and some take longer because they may have done poorly one semester or they took time off or they switched to a major that did not share many required courses with their previous major, etc.</p>

<p>At UMD if you take 15 credits per semester then you'll graduate in four years. Some majors have you end up with more than 120 credits, but you'll still graduate in four years.</p>

<p>2008 national average was 6 years for 57% of students in the same school (transfer students probably take longer). Only 36% do it in 4 years.</p>

<p>never mind then lol</p>

<p>what? that's ridiculous! I think most people do four or less as most students either have ap credits transferred to univ or take summer/winter courses.</p>

<p>"Most" people don't graduate in four years. </p>

<p>"Most" people don't take AP exams.</p>

<p>"Most" people don't take summer or winter courses.</p>

<p>Don't forget that when you are talking about Tier 1 schools that you are talking about the top 5-10% of colleges in this country. There are thousands of universities in this country. Schools that most CC'ers consider "crap" (any school ranked between 50-100 USNEWS), are still among the elite of the elite of this country.</p>

<p>
[quote]
I know that the minimum credits to get a bachelors is 120, but do most people just do that minimum, or do they usually have to get more than that to graduate?

[/quote]

Most undergraduate degrees are designed so that they can be finished in 4 years. There are plenty of other reasons though why many students take more than 4 years to graduate. (Some students take less than a full course load for financial or personal reasons. Some change their major or transfer and need to start over with new requirements. Being shut out of an important class may delay graduation, as may failing a class. Etc.)</p>

<p>
[quote]
gobackto2005 writes: what? that's ridiculous! I think most people do four or less as most students either have ap credits transferred to univ or take summer/winter courses.

[/quote]
Here is a link from the collegeboard website
[quote]
The U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) tracked the progress of first-time students seeking a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent and attending a four-year institution full-time in the 2000-01 school year. It found that only 36 percent of these students graduated from college within four years. And only 57.5 percent of undergraduates who began that year had attained a degree or certificate six years later, in 2007.
Helping</a> Your Child Graduate on Time Can Save You Money

[/quote]
</p>

<p>On UMD-Most people complete a Bachelor's degree in four years (at least from what I've seen). However many programs are now 5 years and include a masters, including engineering (and I believe architecture, business, and education among others). There are also a lot of people who stay extra time due to a second or third major. Plus a lot of people start in the spring and that figure may or may not count that fall semester. (Many people take classes, but not a full course load)</p>

<p>Huge numbers of American college students go to third and fourth tier public colleges and universities where the 4-year graduation rate ranges from 9% to 35%. Then add in the millions of students who start out in community college. As I recall from a recent Washington Post story only 25% of CC students receive a 2-year degree within two years, so their chances of earned a BA/BS in four years are pretty much shot. Even at highly selective colleges (below HYPS level) filled with students from upper middle/upper income families the 4-year graduation rate rarely tops 85%.</p>

<p>""Most" people don't take summer or winter courses."</p>

<p>I'm going to disagree here... Firstly I have no idea why you'd say most people don't take winter courses, and next, I would imagine most people DO take summer courses.</p>

<p>^ Most universities don't offer winter courses. At least universities on a semester system, which seems to be most of them. Winter breaks rarely exceed 4 weeks, and two of those weeks are occupied by the christmas and new year's holidays. There's no time for classes. And given that most universities offer only a fraction of their academic year courses during the summer, it seems safe to assume that most students don't take summer courses either.</p>

<p>@MonkeyKing1</p>

<p>I'm not sure what you are getting at. Are you saying that we on CC are elitists because we expect people (barring extenuating circumstances) to graduate in four years? Let me put it this way.</p>

<p>If, as a typical college student (one who isn't doing double degree/on medical or personal leave/working part-time) you can't graduate within four years, something is wrong. It is not that hard to do. Yes, "most" people can't do it and "most" were not AP scholars to begin with. "Most" are also going to be up to their elbows in debt, 'cause guess what? You just added $50,000-$100,000 to the significant debt you already faced. Congrats.</p>

<p>Now, the ones who did graduate on time and minimized their debt? The ones who didn't fail CHEM 101 three times? Make friends with them. One of them is going to be your boss one day.</p>

<p>"^ Most universities don't offer winter courses. At least universities on a semester system, which seems to be most of them. Winter breaks rarely exceed 4 weeks, and two of those weeks are occupied by the christmas and new year's holidays. There's no time for classes. And given that most universities offer only a fraction of their academic year courses during the summer, it seems safe to assume that most students don't take summer courses either."</p>

<p>Semantic difference. At my school the two main semesters are "fall" and "winter." Never mind about the confusion. </p>

<p>Community colleges typically have similar offerings during the summer as otherwise. People don't usually take 3 full time summers, but a summer course, yes.</p>

<p>Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think what MonkeyKing was saying when he said most people don't take "winter" courses is that most people don't take J-term classes. At least that's how they are referred to at our local LAC and at my son's university. Not sure how many people take them but in 3 or so weeks you can pick up 2-4 credits.</p>