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AACTE’s compendium of information on schools, colleges, and departments of education, Colleges of Education: A National Portrait (2018), documented the declining number of students earning degrees in education. It also sounded an alarm bell about the number of colleges and universities with small education programs. What that report did not do is examine recent trends in the number of institutions awarding degrees in education. This issue brief fills that gap, and provides institutions with useful information against which to benchmark their own experience.
The implications of these trends will vary depending on each institution’s circumstances. Colleges and universities awarding few degrees in education will have to consider whether they can continue to offer their current programs and, if not, whether there are opportunities to partner with other institutions to maintain offerings in education. If the number of institutions awarding degrees in education continues to fall, institutions with thriving programs also may consider expanding their in-person and/or online offerings to fill any gaps. States may react to program closures by making changes in licensure requirements and program approval criteria. AACTE will continue to monitor these trends closely and to support its members as they navigate this dynamic environment.
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