Kentucky: Council on Postsecondary Education

Council on Postsecondary Education

Press Release Date:  Monday, May 16, 2011  
Revision Date:  Wednesday, June 01, 2011 
Contact Information:  Sue Patrick
Cell: 502-330-6596

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 today 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.

“We are extremely pleased to announce these numbers and we applaud the students, their families and our colleges and universities for these significant accomplishments,” said Council President Bob King. “These graduates will not only enjoy numerous individual benefits including the potential for higher lifetime earnings, but they will help meet Kentucky’s need to grow a more highly skilled workforce and robust economy.”

King said these significant gains demonstrate the campuses’ unwavering commitment to advance state goals with quality degree programs during a period of state budget reductions. The state’s new strategic agenda, Stronger by Degrees, will accelerate the pace, he said.

Report highlights include:

  • The Kentucky Community and Technical College System’s associate degrees climbed 13 percent over last year and diplomas grew 32 percent. Diplomas are a workforce-oriented credential requiring a year or more of study.
  • Statewide, bachelor’s degrees increased 6 percent, 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.

Looking back over the past 10 years, the number of degrees conferred statewide has grown substantially at all levels. Ten-year highlights include:

  • The largest growth has been at the associate degree level, which has doubled over the past decade, due primarily to the expansion of applied associate programs at KCTCS.
  • The next largest ten-year growth at the state level was among master’s degrees and professional-practice doctorates, reflecting expansion of Kentucky’s professional workforce.

The report is accessible at .The Council will release a final report later this year.


We believe in the transformative power of postsecondary education. Stronger by Degrees, the new strategic agenda for Kentucky’s colleges and universities and adult education, is powering a stronger Kentucky economy and improving the lives of Kentuckians. To learn more about Stronger by Degrees, visit,.


Last Updated 6/1/2011