Percentage of incoming ninth graders who graduate in 4 years from a high school with a regular degree.



High School Graduation

United States High School Graduation (1990-2014) see more
  • Percentage of incoming ninth graders who graduate in 4 years from a high school with a regular degree.
  • Percentage of incoming ninth graders who graduate in four years from a high school with a regular degree.
Ranking Value State
1 93 Nebraska
1 93 Vermont
3 92 Wisconsin
4 91 North Dakota
5 89 Iowa
5 89 Kansas
7 88 Minnesota
7 88 Pennsylvania
9 87 Maine
9 87 New Hampshire
9 87 New Jersey
12 86 Connecticut
12 86 Massachusetts
12 86 Missouri
12 86 Montana
16 84 Idaho
16 84 Maryland
16 84 Ohio
16 84 Virginia
20 83 South Dakota
20 83 Tennessee
22 82 California
22 82 Colorado
22 82 Illinois
22 82 Kentucky
22 82 Texas
27 80 Indiana
27 80 West Virginia
27 80 Wyoming
30 79 Alaska
30 79 North Carolina
30 79 Oklahoma
30 79 Washington
34 78 Arkansas
34 78 Hawaii
34 78 New York
34 78 Oregon
34 78 Utah
39 77 Arizona
39 77 Delaware
39 77 Michigan
42 76 Rhode Island
43 75 Alabama
43 75 Florida
45 74 New Mexico
46 72 Louisiana
46 72 South Carolina
48 70 Georgia
49 68 Mississippi
50 60 Nevada


Explore the Data

Disparities Related Measures Thematic Map
High School Graduation
Core Measure Impact
High School Graduation
Related Measures
High School Graduation
Thematic Map
High School Graduation


High School Graduation estimates the percentage of incoming ninth graders who graduate within 4 years and are considered regular graduates. The National Center for Education Statistics collects enrollment and completion data and estimates the graduation rate for each state. The rate is the number of graduates divided by the estimated count of freshmen 4 years earlier. This estimated count of freshmen is the sum of the number of 8th graders 5 years earlier, the number of 9th graders 4 years earlier and the number of 10th graders 3 years earlier, divided by 3. Enrollment counts also include a proportional distribution of students not enrolled in a specific grade. The 2014 ranks are based on 2011 to 2012 school year data. 

The high school graduation rate varies from 93% of incoming ninth graders who graduate within 4 years in Nebraska and Vermont to 60% in Nevada. The national average is 81%, compared to 78.2% in the 2013 Edition, an increase in the high school graduation rate of 4.0%.

Education is a vital contributor to health as people must be able to learn about, create, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Education can also help facilitate more effective health care visits as patients must be able to understand and participate in their care for optimal results.[1] The connection between education and health has been well documented and spans almost all health conditions.[2] Educational attainment is also a strong predictor of overall adult health and life expectancy.[3] Education is strongly tied to higher earnings, which is associated with lower rates of uninsured, allowing for greater access to quality health care. The breadth of health determining factors which education affects is so large that investments in education have the potential to improve health and save more lives than medical advances.[4] Each additional year of education is associated with an increase in many health promoting behaviors, and policies aimed at increasing education levels could have tremendous impacts on health.[5] Increasing educational attainment in a population has been shown to improve the health status of the population.[6]

[1] Peerson A. Health literacy revisited: What do we mean and why does it matter? Health Promot Internation. 2009;24(3):285.

[2] Ross CE. The links between education and health. Am Sociol Rev. 1995:719.

[3] Molla MT, Madans JH, Wagener DK. Differentials in Adult Mortality and Activity Limitation by Years of Education in the United States at the End of the 1990s. Population and Development Review. 2004;30(4):625-46.

[4] Woolf SH. Giving everyone the health of the educated: An examination of whether social change would save more lives than medical advances. Am J Public Health. 2007;97(4):679.

[5] Cutler DM, Lleras-Muney A. Education and health: Evaluating theories and evidence. Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research; 2006.

[6] Lleras-Muney A. The relationship between education and adult mortality in the United States. The Review of Economic Studies. 2005;72(1):189.2005;72(1):189.