NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED533187
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-May
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Graduate Enrollment in Science and Engineering Grew Substantially in the Past Decade but Slowed in 2010. InfoBrief. NSF 12-317
Kang, Kelly
National Science Foundation
Approximately 632,700 graduate students were enrolled in science, engineering, and health (SEH) programs in the United States as of fall 2010, a 30% increase from approximately 493,300 students in 2000, according to the National Science Foundation's (NSF's) Survey of Graduate Students and Postdoctorates in Science and Engineering (GSS). The growth in first-time, full-time (FTFT) graduate student enrollment in science and engineering (S&E) programs over this time was even greater, with a 50% increase from approximately 78,400 students in 2000 to approximately 118,500 students in 2010 (figure 1). Continuing the decade-long trend, overall graduate enrollment in S&E reached a new peak in 2010, with 407,291 students in science fields and 149,241 students in engineering fields (table 1). However, rates of growth in these fields slowed considerably between 2009 and 2010 from the two previous years--particularly in FTFT enrollment, which had only a 1.7% gain in science programs and 4.0% gain in engineering programs. Annual increases in 2007-08 and 2008-09 for FTFT graduate enrollment were 7.6% and 6.4% in science and 8.2% and 6.2% in engineering, respectively (figure 1). Enrollment in biomedical engineering, which increased by 7.5% between 2009 and 2010, continues to be one of the fastest growing S&E fields and has experienced the most rapid growth over the last decade (165%), from approximately 3,200 graduate students in 2000 to 8,500 students in 2010 (table 1). These and other findings in this InfoBrief are from the fall 2010 GSS, cosponsored by NSF and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The GSS is an annual survey of all academic institutions in the United States that grant research-based master's degrees or doctorates in SEH fields. The GSS collects data on the number and characteristics of graduate students, postdoctoral appointees (postdocs), and other doctorate-holding non-faculty researchers in SEH fields. This InfoBrief focuses on the graduate students and postdocs within S&E fields. (Contains 1 figure, 3 tables and 3 notes.)
National Science Foundation. 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22230. Tel: 703-292-7000; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Science Foundation
Identifiers - Location: United States