A Brief Statistical Profile of the Community of HBCUs

Last update -- Sunday 3/1/15
The DLL recently updated its directory of HBCUs, "HBCU Websites & Profiles of Undergraduate Programs

Each row of the directory provides a brief profile of an HBCU ==> name; state; public vs. private; type, i.e., two year, four year, or special institution that has no undergraduate programs; total enrollment vs. total Black enrollment vs. the percent of Black enrollees who are female; percent of all undergraduates enrolled in at least one distance education (online) course; six year graduation rates for bachelors programs or 3 year graduation rates for associates programs; and student/faculty ratios.  The data was retrieved from the online IPEDS Data Center for the Fall 2013 semester because that's the most recent IPEDS data available for some of the attributes in the profiles. 

This note aggregates data for individual HBCUs via six summary tables into a brief statistical profile of the entire community of HBCUs.


Table A. Types of HBCUs
Type of HBCUs
Public 4-yr
Private 4-yr
Public 2-yr
Private 2-yr
Special
Closed
Not Accredited
ALL
Number
40
46
11
1
3
1
4
106

Comments on Table A
  • Table A indicates that there are 106 HBCUs, but the remaining tables will be based on IPEDS data for only 98 ... As readers who refer to the DLL's Directory of HBCU Websites and Profiles will discover, IPEDS records no data for the other eight HBCUs because three are "special" institutions that have no undergraduates programs -- Morehouse Medical School, Meharry Medical College, and The Interdenominational Theological Center; St Pauls College recently closed; and four HBCUs are not accredited.

Table B. Black Undergraduate Enrollments by Types of HBCUs
Type
Number
High
Low
Median
Total
Public 4-Year
40
8305
177
2861
131165
Private 4-Year
46
6295
137
913
56167
Public 2-Year
11
22045
648
1777
22045
Private 2-Year
1
327
327
327
327
All Types
98



209704


Comments on Table B
  • Most public HBCUs are much larger than most private HBCUs ... The median enrollment for public 4-year HBCUs was three times as large as the median for private 4-year HBCUs (2,861 vs. 913)
  • Public HBCUs enrolled more than twice as many Black undergraduate as private HBCUs (131,165 vs. 56,167) ... despite the fact that there more private 4-year HBCUs than public 4-year HBCUs (46 vs. 40)

Table C. Black Undergraduate Demographics
Type
Number
Total
Total Black
% Black
Total Black Female
% Black Female
Total Black Male
% Black Male
Public 4-Year
40
158722
131165
83%
80312
61%
50853
39%
Private 4-Year
46
62945
56167
89%
32904
59%
23263
41%
Public 2-Year
11
44289
22045
50%
14035
64%
8010
36%
Private 2-Year
1
330
327
99%
239
73%
88
27%
All Types
98
266286
209704
79%
127490
61%
82214
39%


 Comments on Table C
  • Most HBCUs are predominantly black ... As per column 5, the student bodies of public 4-year, private 4-year, and public 2-year HBCUs were 83%, 89%, and 99% black.  However, total enrollment at the 11 public 2-year HBCUs was fifty-fifty, i.e., 50 percent Black vs. 50 percent non-Black
  • Black women outnumber Black men in all types of HBCUs ... As per the the 7th and 9th columns, the imbalance is 61% vs. 39 % for public 4-year HBCUs, 59% vs. 41% for private 4-year HBCUs, 64% vs. 36% for public 2-year HBCUs, and 61% vs. 39% at the sole private 2-year HBCU.

Table D. Black 150% Graduation Rates
Type
Number
High
Low
Median
Public 4-Year
40
46%
8%
31%
Private 4-Year
46
83%
0%
32%
Public 2-Year
11
31%
2%
14%
Private 2-Year
1
0%
0%
0%

 Comments on Table D
  • For 4-year HBCUs, the graduation rates refer to the percentage of students who graduate in 6 years, i.e., 150% of the "normal" 4 years.
  • For 2-year HBCUs, the graduation rates refer to the percentage of students who graduate in 3 years, i.e., 150% of the "normal" 2 years.
  • As can be seen from the last column in Table D, the median graduation rates for the public and private 4-year HBCUs is about the same, i.e, 31% and 32%
  • However, column 3 shows that the private 4-year HBCU with the highest graduation rate (83%) was almost twice as high as the highest graduation rate for a public HBCU (46%). 
  • The underlying Directory of HBCU Websites and Profiles shows that 11 private 4-year HBCUs had 6-year graduation rates that were higher than the 46% recorded for the highest rated public HBCU.

Table E.  Undergrad % Enrolled in One or More DE/Online Courses
Type
Number
High
Low
Median
Zeros
% Zeros
Public 4-Year
40
61%
0%
25%
2
5%
Private 4-Year
46
49%
0%
0%
29
63%
Public 2-Year
11
47%
0%
19%
1
9%
Private 2-Year
1
0%
0%
0%
1
100%


Comments on Table E
  • The data in Table E refers to the percentage of students that were enrolled in one or more distance education (DE) courses in the Fall 2013 semester. For the vast majority of HBCUs, "distance education" is only delivered by one medium nowadays, i.e., online. 
  • The underlying Directory of HBCU Websites and Profiles shows the IPEDS percentage for each HBCU, whereas Table E shows the highest, lowest, and median percentages for each of the four types of HBCUs. 
  • In other words, column 3 indicates that the public 4-year HBCU with the highest percentage of students in online courses did so by enabling 61 percent of its students to take one or more courses online during the Fall 2013 semester. The highest private 4-year HBCU enabled 49 percent of its students to enroll in one or more online courses. And the highest public 2-year HBCU enabled 47 percent of its students to take one or more online courses. The critical differences are in the "Zeros"
  • Public HBCUs provide substantially more opportunities for students to enroll in online courses than private HBCUs 
    ...The "Zeros" column in Table E shows that only 5 percent of the public 4-year HBCUs did not enable their students to take at least one online course during the Fall 2013 semester, i.e., only 2 out of the 40 public 4-year HBCUs. The other 38 public 4-year HBCUs provided opportunities for online study.
    ... The "Zeros" column shows that only 9 percent of the public 2-year colleges did not enable their students to take at least one online course, i.e., only one of the 11 public 2-year HBCUs. The other 10 public 4-year HBCUs provided opportunities for online study.
    ... By sharp contrast, the "Zeros" column shows that 63 percent of the private 4-year HBCUs did not enable their students to take at least one online course, i.e., 29 out of 46; and the sole private 2-year HBCU also reported zero online enrollments. Only 17 of the 46 private 4-year HBCUs provided opportunities for online study.

Table F. Student/Faculty Ratios
Type
Number
High
Low
Median
Public 4-Year
40
23
11
16
Private 4-Year
46
23
8
14
Public 2-Year
11
39
12
20
Private 2-Year
1
28
28
28


Comments on Table F
  • The median student/faculty ratios for public and private 4-year HBCUs are about the same, but the ratio for 2-year public HBCUs is substantially higher ... As per the fifth column of Table F, the median student/faculty ratios were 16 for public 4-year HBCUs and 14 for private 4-year HBCUs; but the median ratio is substantially higher for 2-year public HBCUs, i.e., 20 students per faculty.
  • Column 3 indicates that the highest ratio among the 40 public 4-year HBCUs was 23, the same as the highest ratio among the 46 private 4-year HBCUs; but the highest ratio among the 11 public 2-year HBCUs was substantially higher, i.e., 39 faculty per student.