Measures of Student Success

First Year Retention Rates

Current First Year Retention Rate for Fall 2019 Cohort: 72.8%

A first year retention rate is that proportion of all students who enter as first time/first year students in the fall term and return to the same institution the following fall term. The University uses retention rates as an indicator of what services are needed to enhance advising, tutoring and other student support services.

Six Year Graduation Rates

Current Six Year Graduation Rate for Fall 2014 Cohort: 63.1%

A six year graduation rate is that proportion of all students entering an institution in a fall term as first time/first year students who graduate from the same institution within six years.  Graduation rates are calculated to meet requirements of the 1990 Student Right to Know Act, which requires postsecondary institutions to report the percentage of students that complete their program within 150 percent of the normal time for completion (six years for students pursuing a bachelor’s degree). Students who transfer and complete a degree at another institution are not included as completers in these rates. 

Data from the National Center for Education Statistics (IPEDS) for peer institutions defined as public comprehensive higher education institutions (granting bachelors and masters degrees, but not doctorates) places the national average six year graduation rate for this group at 50%.

Graduation Rates For Recipients of Pell Grants

Current Graduation Rates for 2014 Cohort who received Pell Grants: 58%

Only first time/first year students who received Pell Grants upon entering the University are included in this sample.  Students who transfer and complete a degree at another institution are not included as completers in these rates. 

Westfield State University Alumni Surveys

2012 Data from National Student Clearinghouse
Graduates who pursue graduate studies:
Cumulative Percentage

Within 6 months


Within 1 year


Within 5 years


The Westfield State University Career Center surveys graduating classes about what students do after graduating from Westfield State. These reports include the percentage of students who continue on in their educational careers in pursuit of graduate studies, rates of graduates employed in fields related to their major, and companies that employ Westfield State graduates. These reports are available here.

Licensing Exam Success Rates

Licensing exam success rates for Westfield State University students pursuing certification in Athletic Training, Education, Nursing and Social Work.

Student Learning Outcomes

Student Learning Outcomes are goals for student achievement in specific disciplinary proficiencies. Each department uses these to evaluate the degree to which students are achieving learning goals in the department’s assessment of their programmatic effectiveness.