These charts shows the student level: freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, or unclassified of students that transfer from Maryland community colleges to University System of Maryland institutions. According to the notes on the data by the University System of Maryland, the transfers are the number of undergraduates enrolled for the first time at the institution with known prior undergraduate post-secondary experience. The students may or may not have transferred credit.

Treemap Maryland Community College Transfer Students by Student Level

Source: University System of Maryland, IRIS, Maryland Community College Transfer Students by Student Level, Fiscal 2020

Drill Down SunBurst Maryland Community College Transfer Students by Student Level

Source: University System of Maryland, IRIS, Maryland Community College Transfer Students by Student Level, Fiscal 2020

Since I was able to get the sunburst chart to finally work properly. I decided to take a look at the data I entered. For some reason, the enrollment for winter 2021 is really low (COVID and short term?), so I decided to pull numbers of a more typical term (still COVID) to get a better idea of actual enrollment. I wrote the code in a text file, so I have not yet taken a look at the chart. However, I know from just looking at the data that Prince George’s County has the highest headcount enrollment. This is logical because Bowie State University is located in Prince George’s County.

Bowie State University Spring 2021 HeadCount Enrollment

Source: University System of Maryland, IRIS, headcount enrollment by area of origin

Today I am taking a look at the dual enrollment data published by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System (MLDS) Center.

According to the data, 85% of 12 graders in the 2018-2019 student year who earned dual enrollment credits between 9th and 12th grades (academic years 2015-2016 to 2018-2019) enrolled in college in fall 2019. Of those who enrolled in college: 36% enrolled in an in-State community college; 35% enrolled in an in-State (public or private) four-year college; and 28% enrolled in an out-of-state college. This is showed in the Sankey diagram below.

I wish I could match up the dual enrollment students with the general student population. It would be nice to see if the behavior of students that dually enrolled differs from the general student population. I will take a deeper look at the data in the future to see if I can use math to make any conclusions.

As of yet MLDS Center has not yet published the general college enrollment data for the 2018-2019 cohort year. However, typically, 50% or less of high school graduates immediately enroll in college. Thus, students that participate in dual enrollment programs (unsurprisingly) seem to enroll in college at a higher rate than students generally.

Source: Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center, dual enrollment courses and credits: 2018-2019

According to the data set, of the 6,237 students that enrolled in-State following participation in a dual enrollment program, 3,012 in-state students, or 48%, enrolled at the college of dual enrollment. A further 2,936 in-state students, 47%, participated in a dual enrollment program at a community college and enrolled at an in-state four-year institution.

notes about the Data

  • The data shows data on the college enrollment patterns for 2018-2019 12th grade high school students with dual enrllment activity at any point between 9th and 12th grade. The initial population was selected by identifying studetns who had noth a high school enrollment and a college enrollment recored in the 2018-2019 academic year (fall to spring). Summer enrollment information was excluded from this analysis.
  • This diagram is the result of me exploring the limits of the data and the graphing software. The numbers and math have not been checked.

Short answer. Yes, free-and-reduced price status likely impacts college segment of initial enrollment. See the pretty Sankey diagram below that shows the college segment of initial enrollment for high school graduates by free- and reduced-priced meal (FARMS) eligibility status. However, read my data notes below before making any conclusions.

Most notably 47% FARMS eligible high school graduates failed to enroll in any college segment compared to 24% of non-FARMS eligible high school graduates. Also, 10% of FARMS eligible high school graduates initially enrolled in an out-of-state college compared to 24% of non-FARMS eligible high school graduates.

Click here if you can not see the diagram.

Long answer. As an analyst, I can think of a long list of reasons why this data does not answer this question. The first being is that the data source does not list actual numbers, just percentages. So I had to back into the numbers I used in the diagram. However, due to rounding, the numbers do not add up to the proper totals. If this was for real analysis I would try to get the actual numbers. I need to use numbers, even if they are not quite correct to get the diagram to render properly.

But for this project, I am just attempting to see if I can code this type of diagram and getting a general sense of what the diagram would show. On that end, it is a success. I can do the coding, I am sincerely hoping that you can see the diagram above right now. I also think I really like the visual effect. I think it works well when you have a few categories for each node.

Notes about the Data

  • The number of students are estimates from the percentages published by the Maryland Longitdinal Data System Center. I have not fully checked my calculations, this is primarily for me to learn how to create the diagrams using the software. I am also attempting to learn which types of data visulizations I find useful and worth pursuing. I also am trying to better understand the data.
  • Due to rounding in the data source the numbers do not add up to the correct totals. This is just for a general idea of the data, not for specifics.
  • Some notes adapted from those provided by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center, all errors are my own.
  • The number number of years following high school graduation impacts the initial postsecondary enrollment numbers. Graduates who enrolled in Private Career Schools or Continuing Education and Training Certificate sequences are not included.
  • This dashboard uses “initial enrollment,” which counts only the first enrollment of a student after graduation. For example, a student graduates high school, enrolls in a summer community college course, and then enrolls in an out-of-state college in the fall. The initial enrollment count for that student is one in-state enrollment. Other methods of counting enrollment may count that student as one in-state and one out-of-state enrollment. Accordingly, when reviewing, and especially when comparing post-secondary enrollment reports, it is important to understand how the enrollments are being counted.
  • The number of high school graduates reported on this dashboard includes: (a) only the counts of 12th grade graduates; and (b) eliminates any duplicate graduation recordsSome numbers are rounded or estimated due to data suppresssion. For general illistrative purposes only.

College of Initial Enrollment

During the 2013-2014 academic year approximately 58,300 students graduated from a Maryland public high school. Of those graduates, approximately 39,900 students had enrolled in college by the following year. The data set captures the higher education segment (community college, public four-year, State-aid independent institution, or out-of-state institution) that a graduate initially enrolls.

As shown in the Sankey diagram, high school graduates enrolled initially as follows: 30% at community college; 17% at a public four-year institution; 3% at a State-aided independent institution; and 19% at an out-of-state institution. An additional 32% of high school graduates did not (yet) enroll in a postsecondary education captured in this dataset.

This data set only captures the college of initial enrollment. For example, if a student enrolls in a community college for a summer class and then enrolls in a public four-year institution in the fall, the student will be recorded as enrolling in community college.

I wonder how the college of initial enrollment for public high school graduates compares to the total enrollment of the various sectors.

Click here if you can not see the diagram.

Source: Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center, Maryland Public High School Graduates with Initial Postsecondary Enrollments, 2013-2014 data

Notes about the Data

  • Some notes adapted from those provided by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center, all errors are my own.
  • Due to rounding the numbers do not add up correctly, so this is just for proof of concept if I had the actual numbers.
  • The number number of years following high school graduation impacts the initial postsecondary enrollment numbers.
  • Graduates who enrolled in Private Career Schools or Continuing Education and Training Certificate sequences are not included.
  • This dashboard uses “initial enrollment,” which counts only the first enrollment of a student after graduation. For example, a student graduates high school, enrolls in a summer community college course, and then enrolls in an out-of-state college in the fall. The initial enrollment count for that student is one in-state enrollment. Other methods of counting enrollment may count that student as one in-state and one out-of-state enrollment. Accordingly, when reviewing, and especially when comparing post-secondary enrollment reports, it is important to understand how the enrollments are being counted.
  • The number of high school graduates reported on this dashboard includes: (a) only the counts of 12th grade graduates; and (b) eliminates any duplicate graduation records
  • Some numbers are rounded or estimated due to data suppresssion. For general illistrative purposes only.

Refining the Pipeline

I spent yesterday trying to figure out how to create a divergent stacked bar chart in amcharts that would display properly on my website, which is based in WordPress. I was unsuccessful. I will need to continue reading through the documentation which is written for people who actually know how to code. Since I got frustrated with my original project, I decided to return to the immediate college enrollees pipeline again to refine it as I learn more about how amcharts operate.

This version of the Sankey diagram is a bit more readable. I was able to wrap the label text and add more space on the right-hand side. I also added code that will allow the data or the image to be downloaded, which I think is a cool feature. I am still having a bit of an issue getting the amcharts diagrams to display as part of the blog, but they work when looking at an individual post. I also added int the percentage numbers, each of which had to be separately added. I have read in the documentation that it is possible to load data into an amcharts from an external source, such as a spreadsheet, but I have not yet figured it out.

As with other versions of this diagram, the biggest weakness is that it does not capture transfer students.

Immediate College Enrollees Pipeline

Overall 65% of students that enrolled in college directly after high school graduation graduated college, from the same sector, by age 25. An additional 3% of students were still enrolled in college (in the same sector). Looked at another way only 31% of high school graduates graduated from college from the same sector that they enrolled in.

Click here if you can not see the diagram.

Source: Maryland Longitudinal Data System, Maryland Public School Pathways 2011

Notes about the Data

  • These notes are adapted from the notes provided by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System. Any errors are my own.
  • To be counted as a community college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any community college and graduated from any community college. Students who start at a community college but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a community college are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any community college and be enrolled in any community college in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in community college transferred from the college and are enrolled in another four-year public, state-aided independent, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.
  • To be counted as a public-four year college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any four-year public and graduated from any four-year public. Students who start at a four-year public but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a four-year public are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any four-year public and be enrolled in any four-year public in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in a four-year public transferred from the college and are enrolled in another community college, state-aided independent institutions, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.
  • To be counted as a State-aided indepented college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any state-aided independent institutions and graduated from any state-aided independent institution. Students who start at a state-aided institution but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a state-aided independent institution are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any state-aided independent institutions and be enrolled in any state-aided independent institutions in Fall 2019. Some students when enrolled in a state-aided independent institutions transferred from the college and are enrolled in another community college, public, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.
  • The out-of-state table above evaluates within sector college graduation independent of college of enrollment. To be counted as a college graduate, the student must have enrolled in out-of-state institutions of any type and graduated from an out-of-state institution of any type. Students who start at an out-of-state institution but graduate from a college in Maryland are not counted as graduates. Students who start at a college in Maryland but graduate from an out-of-state institution are also excluded. Out-of-state institutions may be community colleges, public four-year, or other types of private institutions.

Public High School Graduates that Earn a College degree by Age 25

I am back at making Sankey diagrams to illustrate the pathway to college degrees. Today I have manipulated data published by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center. Look at the College and Workforce Outcomes for Maryland High School Graduates data dashboards and the college pipeline report. MLDS produces dashboards on three populations, immediate college enrollees, non-traditional college enrollees, and “complete” college enrollees. I used that information and a little fudging to make a Sankey diagram showing the pathway to a college degree, which for this data is defined as a postsecondary certificate, or an Associate’s, Bachelor’s, or Master’s degree or higher. Unfortunately, this data set does not track the type of degree earned or the pathway the students took to earn the degree, although I hope to play around with the data in the future making some educated guesses to illustrate those pathways. For this diagram, I used the class of 2011.

Approximately 78% of public high school graduates enrolled in college either full-time or part-time as degree-seeking or non-degree seeking at any point after high school graduation. Overall approximately 50% of students who enrolled in college at any time earned a college degree by age 25. Those who are reported as not earning a college degree by age 25 may be actively pursuing a college degree at age 25 or earn a college degree after age 25.

Click here if you can not see the diagram.

Sources: Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center, College and Workforce Outcomes for Maryland High School Graduates; Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center, College Pipeline Report

Notes on the Data

  • College enrollment and graduation from Maryland’s community colleges, four-year public institutions and state-aided independent institutions is evaluated using data from the Maryland Higher Education Commission. College enrollment and graduation from out-of-state colleges and in-state private colleges is evaluated using data from National Student Clearinghouse. National Student Clearinghouse reports college graduation for the five year period after high school graduation, which is approximately age 23. It is possible additional students graduate from out-of-state colleges or in-state private career colleges after five years. Those records are not available to include in this analysis.
  • Non-Traditional College Enrollment includes high school graduates that either delayed degree-seeking enrollment in college until age 20, or enrolled for the first time as part-time degree-seeking. Non-Traditional College Enrollment is not reported until two years have lapsed since high school graduation.
  • A high school graduate is considered enrolled in college if the graduate meets the definition of Immediate College Enrollment. Immediate college enrollment is defined as a high school graduate who enrolls in college as a full-time, degree-seeking student in the fall immediately following high school graduation.
  • Students reported as “No College Degree by Age 25” may be actively pursuing a college degree at age 25 or earn a college degree after age 25.
  • The data in the diagram has not yet been fully checked. This post is the product of an active learning process. I plan to revisit the data and diagram in the future.

More Than 80% of the Student BODY At Most COmmunity COlleges are Maryland Residents

According to the Maryland Higher Education Commission, 91.6% of Maryland community college students are Maryland residents. This is not surprising at all as community college students tend to attend their local community college. From looking at a data table I was able to see that more than 80% of the student body at most community colleges are Maryland residents. However, only 55.4% of students at Allegany College of Maryland are Maryland residents. With that information and a bit of curiosity about using Datawrapper for mapping, I decided to build a map showing the location of the main campus of each community college and the percent of students that are Maryland residents.

Building the map was relatively simple. I used google to look up the address for the main campus address for each of the 16 community colleges in the State. I then pasted that information into the program and added typed in the Maryland resident information for each college. From my basic sense of the locations of the colleges, the placements look accurate, but I have not checked them.

I struggled with how to best visualize the data since most of the colleges have more than 80% of the student body being Maryland residents. Reducing the number of color categories to three really helped with this issue. It highlights that Allegany College of Maryland is an outliner and Hagerstown Community College is almost an outliner. I probably should have either rounded the numbers to make Hagerstown Community College 80% and reduced the categories to two colors, but I think it is a little fun to see that Hagerstown Community College does not quite meet the 80% requirement. I could also say something such as all but one community college has 79% or more of its student body as Maryland residents. If I was highlighting Allegany College for some reason I would probably do one of those options. But since I am just playing around with the data to see what jumps out at me, I have not done that this time.

After I mapped the data I saw that Allegany College is very close, less than 3 miles, from the West Virginia border. It is also close to the Pennsylvania border. There are other community colleges that are not far from the State borders, but these colleges seem to draw a smaller percentage of non-Maryland residents. Perhaps if I put the color break at a higher percentage and treated Allegany College less like an outliner that story would become clearer, but I have not yet tried that.

WHat I learned from this Mapping Experience

  • Adding location markers in Datawrapper is easy, but can be time consumming
  • Datawrapper is significantly easier to use than other mapping software such as ArcView, but the data crunching functionality is less
  • I have not yet figured out how to show just one of Maryland's counties in a map
  • When most of the data is in the same range, but there are outliners, the data can be hard to visualize
  • I haven't decided how to handle colleges with mulitple campuses when mapping. Representing the "main" campus seems to be the best way for now.
  • Color breaks can change the data story

Context

I have been reading through the Maryland Higher Education Commission’s Annual Data Book 2021. I am interested to see if I can learn any new insights by exploring different visualizations of the data. I am also teaching myself how to use data visualization/graphing software. Today I am taking a look at SAT scores statistics published in the databook as well as additional SAT scores published by the Maryland State Department of Education. The populations for all of these datasets are slightly different.

SAT Scores of Entering for High School Seniors 2020

According to the databook, the mean combined evidence-based reading and writing score and math for Maryland high school seniors in 2020 was 1029, slightly less than the nationwide mean of 1051. I have read in the past this is because a higher percentage of students in Maryland take the SAT than nationally, but I will have to find a citation that is true.

SAT Scores By COunty

On the Maryland Report Card, the Maryland State Department of Education publishes data about students. As part of the "college readiness data", average SAT scores are published. In addition to an average for all students from the local school system, the scores are disaggregated by a number of subpopulations including by low-income students, that is those eligible for free or reduced price meals. Low-income students scored lower on the SAT than all students in every county. However, the average scores were nearly identical for students from Dorchester County. At the SEED school, where almost all students are low-income, low-income students scored higher than all students.

There is a large range of scores between counties and between low-income students and all students in most counties. Howard County has the highest average score for all students and the second-highest average score., after Carroll County, for low-income students. In fact, low-income students from Carroll and Howard counties had a higher average score than the average score for all students from 14 counties, Baltimore City, and the SEED school.

I plan to examine the data for more subpopulations in the future. Including the best way to visualize the data.

SAT SCores of Entering Freshmen

The MHEC databook publishes the average, 25th percentile, and 75th percentile SAT scores of entering freshmen at the public four-year institutions. Institutions submit aggregated data on average SAT scores for all incoming freshmen. Some institutions do not require SAT scores for admission. Institutional score ranges are based upon those scores that were used as a basis for admitting students to the institution.

This chart shows the SAT scores of entering freshmen for the University of Maryland, College Park from the 25th to the 75th percentile

Another Attempt at a Sankey College Pipeline

Another day, another attempt at using amcharts to illustrate the college pipeline of Maryland public school students. This time I used the Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center data. I am still struggling with getting the data to display in the chart in the way I want it to, but I am making progress. I figured out how to fade out categories when I do not know what happened to the students. For example, I faded out students that did not immediately enroll in a college directly after high school. These students may have never enrolled in college, may have enrolled in college at another time, or even enrolled in college in another country.

I still have not figured out how to have the full label on the right-hand side to display. I played around with a few settings, but none of them allowed the full label to show. There is documentation for the am charts software, but I have not yet read through it all and I do not have a ton of experience with writing javascript. I think if I experiment with it more I will continue to learn how to use it.

As I figure out the program you need to click on the actual post or this link to see the chart. I am working on this issue.

What I can learn from this Pipeline data

From this data, I can only learn the ultimate fates of 32% of the students who exited a Maryland public high in 2011 at the end of 12th grade. That is the percentage of high school exiters that graduated college (from the same sector they initially enrolled) or are still enrolled in college at the same sector.

I know nothing about the students who did not immediately start a college degree program in the fall and nothing about students that transferred between higher education sectors. To really understand the pathways I need more information. I would love to be able to illustrate how students flow through the higher education system. I want to know how many students reverse transfer, and how many of those who do get degrees, either an associate’s or a bachelor’s.

Notes About the PipeLine Data

The following are the notes about the data provided by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System Center. The data explore the high school graduation, college-going, and college graduation for 12th grade students who exited Maryland public schools in 2011. The notes are very important because I am trying to deeply understand all of the data I am examining.

community College Notes

To be counted as a community college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any community college and graduated from any community college. Students who start at a community college but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who started in another sector but graduate from a community college are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any community college and be enrolled in any community college in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in community college transferred from the college and are enrolled in another four-year public, state-aided independent, or out-of-state institutions.

Public Four-Year NoTes

The four-year public table above evaluates within sector college graduation and persistence independent of college of enrollment. To be counted as a college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any four-year public and graduated from any four-year public. Students who start at a four-year public but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a four-year public are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any four-year public and be enrolled in any four-year public in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in a four-year public transferred from the college and are enrolled in another community college, state-aided independent institutions, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.

State-aided Independent Notes

The state-aided independent table above evaluates within sector college graduation and persistence independent of college of enrollment. To be counted as a college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any state-aided independent institutions and graduated from any state-aided independent institution. Students who start at a state-aided institution but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a state-aided independent institution are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any state-aided independent institutions and be enrolled in any state-aided independent institutions in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in a state-aided independent institutions transferred from the college and are enrolled in another community college, public, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.

Out-of-State Notes

The out-of-state table above evaluates within sector college graduation independent of college of enrollment. To be counted as a college graduate, the student must have enrolled in out-of-state institutions of any type and graduated from an out-of-state institution of any type. Students who start at an out-of-state institution but graduate from a college in Maryland are not counted as graduates. Students who start at a college in Maryland but graduate from
an out-of-state institution are also excluded. Out-of-state institutions may be community colleges, public four-year, or other types of private institutions.

Additional Notes

  1. Exiter is defined as a student who is enrolled in a Maryland public school through the end of 12th grade.
  2. High school graduate is defined as a 12th grade exiter who fulfills the requirements to graduate from a Maryland public high school.
  3. Immediate college enrollment is defined as a high school graduate who entered college as degree-seeking in the fall immediately following high school graduation.
  4. College graduate is defined as a high school graduate who entered college as degree-seeking in the fall following high school graduation and arned any college degree by age 25.
  5. Still Enrolled is defined as a high school graduate who entered college as degree-seeking in the fall following high school graduation, did not graduate from college and is enrolled in college in Fall 2019.
  6. Enrollment in a graduate program is defined as a high school graduate who entered college as degree-seeking in the fall following high school graduation, completed a college degree by age 25 and enrolled in a Master’s degree program.
  7. Graduation from a graduate program is defined a high school graduate who entered college as degree-seeking in the fall following high school graduation, completed a college degree by age 25, enrolled in a Master’s degree program and earned a Master’s degree by June 2019. Students enrolling in PhD programs, or professional degree programs (law, medical, etc.) are excluded from this analysis.