The National High School Center has updated the High School Initiatives Map
with new information on state high school graduation requirements, university admission requirements, and the number of high school students in each state. This resource allows users to compare each state’s high school graduation requirements and college admission requirements.
According to the High School Initiatives Map, nearly half (22) of state high school graduation requirements do not meet admission requirements to universities in at least one of the following areas: English/Language Arts, Math, Social Studies, Science, and Foreign Language. Foreign language is the most common course for which graduation requirements do not meet admission requirements. Fourteen states have foreign language graduation requirements that do not meet admission requirements to universities in the state. All but one state’s graduation requirements met college admission requirements for English/Language Arts, but seven states’ graduation requirements were lower than college admission requirements in math, and six were lower in social studies and science.
Although many states have embraced the goal of graduating every student college- and
career- ready, career and technical education (CTE) requirements and college-ready requirements appear misaligned in several states. For example, nine states have a graduation requirement that can be fulfilled through either
career or technical education or
a foreign language course. Foreign languages are often required by colleges for admission, whereas CTE courses can be instrumental in helping students become ready for a career pathway. Only six states unequivocally require a CTE course, and two additional states offer the choice of CTE or a course in the arts.
This blog post was originally authored under the auspices of the National High School Center at the American Institutes for Research (AIR). The National High School Center’s blog, High School Matters
, which ran until March 2013, provided an objective perspective on the latest research, issues, and events that affected high school improvement. The CCRS Center plans to continue relevant work originally developed under the National High School Center grant. National High School Center blog posts that pertain to CCRS Center issues are included on this website as a resource to our stakeholders.