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Sun Devil Athletics reaches 80 percent graduation success rate

October 25, 2012

Statistics for the Graduation Success Rate (GSR) released Oct. 23 by the NCAA indicated an 80 percent graduation success rate, which is an all-time high for Arizona State University. The GSR is based on student-athletes who entered college as freshmen in 2001-2004 and allows for the removal of those individuals from the cohort who left ASU in good academic standing prior to completing their eligibility.

The GSR is the NCAA's more comprehensive calculation of student-athlete academic success. The NCAA rate is more accurate than the federally mandated methodology because it includes incoming transfers and students enrolling in the spring semester who receive athletic aid and graduate and deletes from the calculation student-athletes who leave an institution and were academically eligible to compete. The federal rate does neither.

ASU's stated goal when the APR was introduced seven years ago was an 80-percent GSR.  At the time, ASU’s GSR was at 69 percent and has seen an 11-percent increase since that point.

In meeting that goal, ASU ranks tied for fifth in the Pac-12 Conference (out of 12 institutions), just one percentage point out of a tie for third-place (Washington and Utah, 81 percent) and just four percentage points from second place (UCLA at 84 percent).

ASU's women's GSR rate is 94 percent, which is second in the Pac-12 only to Stanford (98-percent). The ASU men's GSR is 67 percent, up from last year.

Four ASU teams lead the Pac-12 Conference with a four-year GSR of 100 percent: women’s golf, women’s swimming and diving, women’s tennis and women’s volleyball. The men’s golf team (86 percent) and the men’s swimming and diving teams (84 percent) had the highest GSR of men’s ASU teams, ranking sixth and fourth in the conference, respectively.

ASU's football team GSR is 63 percent, which ranks fifth in the Pac-12 and is just one percentage point behind Oregon (64 percent) in fourth and two points behind Utah (66 percent) in third.

This is the 22nd release of institutional graduation rates since national "right-to-know" legislation was passed in 1990. In 2005, the NCAA Division I Committee on Academic Performance implemented the initial release of the team GSR data.

“Sun Devil coaches, student-athletes and the office of student-athlete development have partnered with university resources to achieve the 80-percent threshold,” said Jean Boyd, associate athletic director for the Office of Student-Athlete Development. “This is the fifth consecutive year that we have improved our Graduation Success Rate. Moving from 69 percent to 80 percent is a significant accomplishment, yet we are already setting our sights on the 85 percent threshold.”