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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

December 10, 2004

Retention and graduation rates,
full-time freshmen in learning communities

 Number of
Number of

Year CommunitiesFreshmen1-year (%)3-year (%) 4-Year (%)6-Year (%)
1998In Comm.231,08090.981.140.877.6
 Not in Comm.2,71681.968.924.562.2
1999In Comm.361,60290.179.938.0
 Not in Comm.2,41881.768.927.0
2000In Comm.381,49089.880.237.5
 Not in Comm.2,79980.467.027.9
2001In Comm.431,68388.177.5
 Not in Comm.2,91380.667.5
2002In Comm.431,64989.9
 Not in Comm.2,51880.5
2003In Comm.421,77188.0
 Not in Comm.2,08681.9


Iowa State learning communities are yielding impressive results. Since 1998, students who participated in freshman learning communities have notched higher retention and graduation rates than their classmates. There are about 50 learning communities at Iowa State. Students in the communities generally take two to three courses together during their freshman year, study together and may even live in the same residence halls. U.S. News and World Report ranked Iowa State's learning communities among the top five nationally in 2003. More about learning communities: