Kentucky’s public and independent colleges and universities conferred an all-time high of 62,700 degrees and credentials during the 2010-11 academic year, according to a preliminary annual degree report issued by the Council on Postsecondary Education.
The historic high number of degrees represents an 11 percent increase over last year and includes gains across all levels, especially workforce-oriented certificates, diplomas, associates and professional-practice doctorate degrees.
The Kentucky Community and Technical College System’s associate degrees climbed 13 percent over last year and diplomas – a workforce-oriented credential that requires a year or more of study – grew 32 percent. The report also noted that the largest growth in Kentucky postsecondary education over the last 10 years as been at the associate degree level, which has doubled over the past decade, primarily due to the expansion of applied associate programs at KCTCS.
Statewide, bachelor’s degrees increased 6 percent in the 2010-2011 school year, led by strong growth in the independent sector.
Graduate education posted a one-year gain of 9.5 percent overall. While growth was seen at all graduate degree levels, new and expanded professional-practice doctoral programs at Kentucky’s public comprehensive and independent universities led to an 18 percent increase in the number of these advanced practice degrees in just one year.