SDSU Student-Athletes Continue Graduation Success


INDIANAPOLIS – The NCAA released the latest Division I graduation rate data on Wednesday, including the division's Graduation Success Rate (GSR), which meant good news for the San Diego State athletic department.
The GSR score for SDSU student-athletes in the entering freshman class of 2011-12 stands at a department-record 80 percent, which ranks above the general student body Federal Graduation Rate (accounts for freshmen only and not transfers) of 75 percent.
In addition, the aforementioned figure marks the third straight year in which San Diego State athletics increased its GSR score, up from 76 percent in 2009-10 to 79 percent in 2010-11 to 80 percent in 2011-12.
Five Aztec squads had a GSR score of over 90 percent, including women's tennis (100), softball (94), water polo (93), rowing (91) and swimming and diving (90), while five others posted a GSR of 80 percent or higher, including men's soccer (89), lacrosse (87), volleyball (83), men's tennis (82) and women's basketball (80).
The Division I Board of Directors created the GSR in response to Division I college and university presidents who wanted data that more accurately reflected the mobility of college students than the federal graduation rate. The federal rate counts any student who leaves a school as an academic failure, no matter whether he or she enrolls at another school. Also, the federal rate does not recognize students who enter school as transfer students.
The GSR formula removes from the rate student-athletes who leave school while academically eligible and includes student-athletes who transfer to a school after initially enrolling elsewhere. This calculation makes it a more complete and accurate look at student-athlete success. The federal graduation rate, however, remains the only measure to compare student-athletes with the general student body.
Using the less-inclusive federal rate, Division I student-athletes perform better than the general student body. The federal rate for Division I student-athletes in the 2011 entering class increased two points to 68 percent, while the general student body remained at 66 percent, a difference of two points.