If you are wondering whether you will get a job in your field when you graduate college, or get into the graduate school of your dreams, ask colleges for data on recent graduating classes. Lynn O’Shaughnessy, speaking at the Higher Education Consultants Association Conference, recommends that when you receive post-graduation data from colleges, you should also ask what percent of the graduating class the data was based on. Often, the reports are based on self-reporting by only 5 percent of the college's graduating class.
A few colleges provide a clear and complete post-graduation picture. Lynn O'Shaughnessy cited reporting by St. Olaf College and Bucknell University as a best practice. St. Olaf College gathered data on 92 percent of their 2011 graduates and prepared this 64-page report and Bucknell University gathered data on 97 percent of their 2011 graduates and prepared this 58-page report.
What kind of information does your college, or the colleges you are considering, provide about their graduates?