Serving Students and the Public Good: HBCUs and the Washington Monthly College Rankings

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Black colleges may be better option for Black students

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

A new United Negro College Fund (UNCF) study finds that Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) often outperform non-HBCUs in educating Black students. The study, “Serving Students and the Public Good: HBCUs and the Washington Monthly College Rankings,” was released in October by the UNCF’s Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute. Based on the 2012 Washington Monthly college rankings, it found that 83 percent of HBCUs were above the median among 249 liberal arts colleges and 50 percent above the median for graduating students from low-income families. It also points out:

• HBCUs “consistently rank in the top 50 percent” of schools in both overall rankings and social mobility ranking. • HBCUs seem to be more successful in graduating students from “disadvantaged backgrounds…and tend to perform at an above-average level and significantly better than when they are evaluated strictly on the basis of actual graduation rates.”

• HBCUs “have a long-standing commitment to provide educational access to all students.”

College rankings, such as in the U.S. News and World Report, are commonly used by school officials to highlight the institution’s many features to attract students. Continue Reading →

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