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Science, Engineering, and Health Graduate Students per 1,000 Individuals 25–34 Years Old (Students)

State Indicator S-21

This indicator is a relative measure of a state's population with graduate training in science, engineering, and health (SEH) and is defined as the ratio of SEH graduate students to a state's population aged 25–34.

Graduate students are counted based on the state of their university and include state residents, residents of other states, and noncitizens. The numerator includes graduate students at both public and private institutions. The denominator includes all state residents aged 25–34 and was chosen to approximate the age of most graduate students.

Data on SEH graduate students are counts obtained from academic institutions in the United States that offer doctoral or master's degree programs in any SEH field: physical, computer, agricultural, biological, earth, atmospheric, ocean, and social sciences; psychology; mathematics; engineering; and health-related fields. This indicator excludes three new fields (architecture, communication, and family and consumer science) added to the survey in 2007 to preserve comparable trend data. In 2014, previously eligible for-profit institutions were removed from the survey frame to exclude practitioner-oriented graduate programs. The overall impact on graduate student data was minimal, though some state-level estimates were disproportionately affected.

Estimates of the population aged 25–34 are provided by the U.S. Census Bureau based on the 2000 and 2010 Decennial Censuses and are reported by the state of residence. Each year, the Census Bureau utilizes current data on births, deaths, and migration to calculate population change since the most recent decennial census and produces time series of estimates of population. Estimates for states with smaller populations are generally less precise than estimates for states with larger populations.

A high value for this indicator may suggest the successful provision of graduate training in SEH fields. Student mobility after graduation is not accounted for, which may make this indicator less meaningful in predicting the qualifications of a state's future technical workforce. A state's value for this indicator may also be high when its higher education system draws a large percentage of out-of-state students, a situation that sometimes occurs in states with small resident populations and the District of Columbia. Small differences in the value of the indicator between states or across years generally are not meaningful.

Data sources: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Survey of Graduate Students and Postdoctorates in Science and Engineering; U.S. Census Bureau, 2000 and 2010 Decennial Censuses and Population Estimates Program.

  • 1st Quartile

    17.3575.12
  • 2nd Quartile

    13.3817.1
  • 3rd Quartile

    10.8413.36
  • 4th Quartile

    5.2210.6
  • No data

Footnote

NOTES: The national SEH graduate student total for the United States includes U.S. territories; The national population total for the United States includes Puerto Rico.

SOURCE: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Survey of Graduate Students and Postdoctorates in Science and Engineering, data as of February 2018; U.S. Census Bureau, 2000 and 2010 Decennial Censuses and Population Estimates Program (various years), data as of June 2017.

Recommended Citation: National Science Board. 2018. “Science, Engineering, and Health Graduate Students per 1,000 Individuals 25–34 Years Old.” Science and Engineering Indicators 2018, State Indicators. Alexandria, VA: National Science Foundation (NSB-2018-1). https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/state-indicators/indicator/seh-graduate-students-per-1000-25-34-year-olds

Last updated: June 7, 2018