Fewer students with disabilities attend postsecondary institutions, and of those who do, fewer attend four-year institutions and eventually earn bachelors degrees than their nondisabled peers. A study conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics found that two years after high school, 63% of the students with disabilities had enrolled in some form of postsecondary education, compared to 72% of the students without disabilities. Of those enrolled, 42% of the students with disabilities were in four-year schools, compared to 62% without disabilities. After five years, 53% of the students with disabilities that attained a degree or certificate were still enrolled, compared to 64% of the students without disabilities. Of the students with disabilities, 16% earned a bachelor's degree and 25% earned an associate's degree or vocational certificate. Of the students without disabilities, 27% attained a bachelor's degree and 25% earned an associate's degree or vocational certificate.
Many two-year college students with disabilities who have the desire and potential to succeed in a four-year postsecondary program have difficulties making a successful transition. Challenges relate to their own knowledge and skills and to the differences between two- and four-year colleges.
Encourage two-year students who wish to make this transition to develop a plan for success and use resources available to them. For specific suggestions, consult Moving On: The Two-Four Step or view the video by the same title.