Student Achievement Research and Goals


Achievement Goal 1

Increase annual FTES by 1% over the previous year

Enrollment Data*
*Select “Enrollments” to review Southside Virginia Community College’s success at meeting this Achievement Goal.

Achievement Goal 2

Southside Virginia Community College’s 150% graduation rate for First-Time, Full-Time students is at or above the VCCS average

Graduation Rates

Achievement Goal 3

Increase the number of awards granted by 1% over previous year

Awards Data**
**Select “Completions” to review Southside Virginia Community College’s success at meeting this Achievement Goal.

Achievement Goal 4

Southside Virginia Community College’s Fall-to-Fall and Fall-to-Spring Retention Rates for first-time, curricular students and all curricular students will be at or above the VCCS average

Fall-to-Fall Retention Rates

Fall-to-Spring Retention Rates

Achievement Goal 5

Increase transfer rates to four-year institutions by 1% over the previous year

Transfer Rates


Additional Information about Student Success Measures at SVCC

To fulfill the College’s Mission SVCC has developed strong academic programs that facilitate transfer to four-year institutions of higher education and assist with the transition to the workforce.

SVCC’s graduation rate from the cohort of curriculum-placed, full-time, first-time students beginning in Fall 2012 reflects that 35.6% graduated by2016. This graduation rate is the second highest in the VCCS andis 12 percentage points above the VCCS rate of 23.6% for the same time period. 

The National Student Clearinghouse reports student transfer rates to the Virginia Community College System (VCCS). The VCCS then compiles a Transfer Report in which students’ rates of transfer are calculated by degree category.  For 2012-2013 graduates, 28.4% of all SVCC graduates matriculated to another college or university.  This was slightly higher than the VCCS average of 26.6%.  In addition, the National Student Clearinghouse conducted a six-year study comparing completion and transfer rates of SVCC students who started in 2009 with the national average of two-year colleges. SVCC’s total completion rate is 52.87% compared to the national average of 38.14% for students enrolled at other two-year colleges.

The most recent enrollment and retention rates  available reflect that of all SVCC students who started in Fall 2014, 38.8% returned in the Fall 2015, which is below the VCCS average of 41.4%. For first-year, full-time curricular students enrolling in Fall 2014, 41.3% were retained at SVCC in Fall 2015, which is below the system’s 52.9%average.  SVCC’s Fall to Spring, 2015-2016, retention rates show similar patterns, with overall retention reaching 68.7% and first-time curricular retention showing a rate of 77.4%.  As indicated by SVCC’s strategic plan, “One College, One Mission,” SVCC has set benchmark goals to improve Fall to Fall and Fall to Spring retention rates to 60% and 72% respectively.  

The Perkins Core Performance Measures for 2014-2015 indicate that ofSVCC’s career and technical program graduates, 51.0% completed programs of study compared to the VCCS average of 41.5%.  Of SVCC graduates, 72.6% were employed which is comparable to VCCS’s average of 72.5%.  SVCC retention/transfer rates of 55.3% trailed the VCCS average of 64.3%. 

For career and technical graduates, SVCC also considers performance on state licensing exams when evaluating students’ success in programs. Some examples are included here. For the last five years, the Associate Degree Nursing (RN) Program has had an average 86.76% pass rate on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for first-time test-takers. First-time passrate for practical nursing program students have averaged 90.65% over the last five years on the NCLEX-PN National League of Nursing. The benchmark expected by the Virginia Board of Nursing for both the NCLEX-RN and NCLEX-PN licensure exam is 80% for first time test-takers.  


According to information extracted from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians, the pass rate for students in the Emergency Medical Services curricula was 86% from 2013-2016.  SVCC strives to maintain a pass rate at or above a benchmark of 70%.

Overthe last four years, in the Welding program, 81%of students successfully earned certifications from the American Welding Society.


In 2013 SVCC’s Automotive Technology programs became National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) accredited. For the most recent year of 2015-2016, testing for the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certifications was administered to 40 students with a 93% pass rate.

Retention rates, graduation rates, transfer success data, state licensing examinations,and job placement rates are all considered in the evaluation of programs by faculty and deans, who determine specific improvement actions to be taken as a result of the goal,data, and program review.  An example of program specific student achievement data is found in this sample Practical Nursing Program Review.

A Graduate Follow-up Survey is mailed to graduates approximately one year after graduation. SVCC also surveys the employers of graduates who have granted the College permission to contact their employer.This surveyis conducted in two-year intervals.  In the SVCC Graduate Follow-Up Report, Class of 2014, prepared annually by the Office of Institutional Effectiveness, the success of SVCC students is measured with respect to GPA, academic preparation, satisfaction with the transfer process,and level of attendance.  Numerous studies have demonstrated conclusively that astudent who performs well academically at SVCC will perform well at the Virginia senior institutions.  From the 144 survey respondents, the mean GPA was 3.138 on a four-point scale, and 55% of the graduates indicated they had pursued a bachelor’s degree after graduating from SVCC. With regard to whether students felt that SVCC had prepared them well for attendance at a senior institution, 89%rated the preparation positively.


In evaluating student achievement, the College examines statewide and national trends, course and program completion rates, students’ performance on state licensing exams, and job placements rates.  Although the College is notable to collect all of this information on every student, SVCC collects college-wide data on retention, graduation,and student success, and the College sets benchmark goals to improve student achievement overall.


Supporting documents:

SVCC College’s Mission

SVCC and VCCS Graduation Rate, First time, full time students 2012-16

SVCC and VCCS Transfer Report, 2012-13

National Student Clearinghouse 2016 Study

SVCC and VCCS Student Retention Rates, Fall to Fall 2014-15

SVCC and VCCS Student Retention Rates, Fall to Spring 2015-16

SVCC Strategic Plan, Retention Benchmarks, P. 7

Perkins Core Performance Measures for 2014-2015 – Individual Performance for VCCS Community Colleges 4P1 comparison

NCLEX-RN National League of Nursing SVCC Pass Rate, 2012-2016

NCLEX-PN National League of Nursing SVCC Pass Rate First-time Testers, 2012-2016

Emergency Medical Services Program and pass rate information

Welding Program Certifications Report 2012-2016

Automotive Program Service Certifications 2012-2016  

SVCC Program Review Manual, 2016-2021

Practical Nursing Program Review

SVCC Graduate Follow-Up Report, 2014


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