Slight Drop in Bachelor’s Degree Awards to African Americans

According to the U.S. Department of Education, in the year 2004 blacks earned 131,241 four-year bachelor’s degrees from American colleges and universities. The number of blacks earning bachelor’s degrees in 2004 was the highest in this nation’s history. But in 2005 blacks earned only 127,844 bachelor’s degrees, down 2.6 percent from the previous year.

Even more discouraging is the fact that the percentage of all bachelor’s degrees won by blacks dropped from 9.4 percent in 2004 to 8.9 percent in 2005.

It is hoped that the 2005 figures are a one time statistical anomaly as the overall progress in black bachelor’s degree attainments has been steady over the past two decades. Since 1990 the number of blacks earning bachelor’s degrees has more than doubled. Since the year 2000 black bachelor’s degree awards have increased by 16 percent.