Student Achievement

Baylor University provides students with a truly transformational education — one in which students develop their leadership potential, explore their faith and beliefs, increase their desire for wisdom, and prepare for service in a diverse and interconnected global society. 

As part of the Illuminate Academic Strategic Plan and Baylor's Strategic Enrollment Management Plan, Baylor has established goals for student achievement measures through the year 2027. The tables below represent the current status of student achievement and progress toward those institutional goals.   

Threshold values are determined by the lowest value recorded in the previous five academic years.

First-Year Retention Rate

A first-year to second-year retention rate is one of the best indicators of undergraduate students' successful adjustment to university life. Over the past decade, Baylor has seen significant growth in the retention rate of freshman returning for their second year. The current year data demonstrates an increase from 88.3% in Fall 2021 to 90.2% in Fall 2022.

  Threshold Actual (2022) Target (2027) 5-Year Trend
2021 First-Year Cohort 88.3% 90.2% 91.8%

Undergraduate Graduation Rates

Graduation rates demonstrate the percentage of students who complete their educational goals and to do so in an expected timeframe. Over the past five years, Baylor’s four-year graduation rate has been trending upward, reaching a record high of 69.6% in 2021. In 2022, the four-year graduation rate decreased to 68.1%, but still well on track to reach the target of 70.0% in 2027. 

Four-Year Graduation Rate
  Threshold Actual (2022) Target (2027) 5-Year Trend
2018 First-Year Cohort 62.9% 68.1% 70.0%

The six-year graduation rate has also increased steadily over the past several years, again reaching a record high in 2021 of 81.6%. In 2022, Baylor saw another slight decrease from the record year of 2021, but the target of 82.6% for 2027 is well within reach.

Six-Year Graduation Rate
  Threshold Actual (2022) Target (2027) 5-Year Trend
2016 First-Year Cohort 76.6% 81.4% 82.6%

Baylor disaggregates six-year graduation rate data using the Traditional IPEDS Graduation Rate (150%; 6-year graduation rate) as our Key Student Completion Indicator (KSCI). Reports are available on Baylor's Student Right to Know webpage that disaggregate six-year graduation rates by gender, race/ethnicity, Pell status, and first-generation students. 

Undergraduate Placement Success Rate

Undergraduate placement rates demonstrate the successful transition of graduates into a career (including employment, military service, or volunteer service) or graduate school. Since 2018, Baylor has seen a strong increase in the success rate of graduates in finding a placement within 180 days of graduation. 

  Threshold Actual (2022) Target (2027) 5-Year Trend
2021-22 Exit Cohort 77.5% 91.1% 92.6%

Program specific placement rate reports are available on the linked on the linked Career Center Success Data webpage.

Ten-Year Research Doctorate Completion Rate

As part of our strategic vision, Baylor pursued and ultimately achieved becoming a R1 university in December 2021. In this pursuit and after, Baylor prioritizes growing the success of our research doctorate programs. Baylor uses the IPEDS definition to identify research doctorate programs: “A Ph.D. or other doctor’s degree that requires advanced work beyond the master’s level, including the preparation and defense of a dissertation based on original research, or the planning and execution of an original project demonstrating substantial artistic or scholarly achievement…” In the past five years, the 10-year research doctorate completion rate has had a great deal of variance. Nonetheless, the rate has been trending upward, overall, toward the 2027 target of 80%.

  Threshold Actual (2022) Target (2027) 5-Year Trend
2011-12 Entry Cohort 60.6% 71.7% 80.0%


Data sources: Retention and graduation/completion data are provided by the Office of Institutional Research. Placement data is provided by the Baylor Career Center. The placement data is based on the number of students who have been hired in full- or part-time jobs, enrolled in graduate school, serve in the military, and are in full-time volunteer programs (e.g., Teach for America, Peace Corps). 

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