Less than half of first-time, full-time freshman students graduated from CSUN in six years in 2014.
The full-time freshman CSUN graduation rate for the 2008 – 2014 cohort came in at 46.8 percent, according to the CSU Division of Analytic Studies. A Sundial analysis shows CSUN is ranked 16th out of the 23 CSU campuses in terms of this rate.
On Aug. 20, President Dianne Harrison declared new goals for CSUN, including an increase in the graduation rate for first-time freshman to 60 percent by 2025.
“Important initiatives have already been taking place at CSUN to help students achieve their graduation’s goal without losing track to get there, ” CSUN Vice Provost Michael Neubauer said.
In order to graduate on time, a student should enter in 15 units per semester said Neubauer.
“Some students change major, which take more time to graduate,” Neubauer said. “Others work several hours every week and they are not able to take as many as units as they wish to graduate on time.”
CSUN has been working on initiatives to improve graduation rate, such as the math program called Early Start Math.
The program was first launched in 2012 and is mandatory for freshman. Incoming students are able to take Early Start Math classes over the summer before entering CSUN.
“It’s very successful,” Neubauer said. “In six weeks, students can take the course online and then improve their math score so they can be ready to start at CSUN.”
Another initiative placed by CSUN has been the advisement program. The pilot program in 2015 has been a success and will be fully in function for next year, Neubauer said.
The online program has the function to track students according to their achievement and goals toward graduation. The analytical tool will be able to identify students and send reports back to the university. CSUN will then be able to track students and follow up with them individually. It will help students readjust to their planning.
“From what we know, work commitment, switch of major and family obligation lead students to graduate on a longer period of time,” Neubauer said.
Neubauer said CSUN’s focus is to make sure students are prepared before taking classes and to follow up with them along the way.
For students like 26-year-old CSUN marketing graduate Claudine Rubangura, a program like this one might have helped her to efficiently select classes in her major.
“I mean, I certainly took units I did not need. I wish as soon as I started college CSUN had this plan established already,” said Rubangura.