Race and Ethnicity in Higher Education

About the Project

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​In 2019, the American Council on Education (ACE), in collaboration with the Research Triangle Institute (RTI) International, released the first of two reports, Race and Ethnicity in Higher Education: A Status Report, along with an interactive microsite. The report and microsite offer a data-informed foundation for those working to close persistent equity gaps, by providing a comprehensive review of the educational pathways of today’s college students and the educators who serve them. In 2020, ACE released the second report, Race and Ethnicity in Higher Education: 2020 Supplement.

The reports examine over 300 indicators and draw data from several principal sources, including the U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census Bureau, and non-federal organizations. These data provide a foundation from which the higher education community and its many stakeholders can draw insights, raise new questions, and make the case for why race still matters in American higher education.

Visit the site, www.equityinhighered.org, to: 

Why This Work Matters

​​​​The racial and ethnic makeup of the United States has undergone dramatic changes in just the last 20 years. That diversity comes with a host of benefits at all levels of education and in the workforce. Moreover, the current and future health of our nation—economic and otherwise—requires that the whole of our population have equitable access to sources of opportunity. 

Chief among such sources of opportunity is higher education. It is therefore imperative that educators, policymakers, community leaders, the media, and others have access to timely data on one of the most salient predictors of higher education access and success in this country: race and ethnicity. 


​This work was made possible through generous funding provided by the Mellon Foundation.​​


​Explore the Microsite

Download the reports, data tables, and individual chapters. Browse an extensive resource library and access data tables.

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