Minnesota Office of Higher Education

Research Reports

Accountability  anchor down to Accountability

College Readiness & Participation  anchor down to College Readiness & Participation

Financial Aid — General  anchor down to Financial Aid — General

State Financial Aid Programs  anchor down to State Financial Aid Programs

Student Enrollment & Completion  anchor down to Student Enrollment

Higher Education Financing & Costs  anchor down to Higher Education Financing

Private Institutions  anchor down to Private Institutions

Workforce Initiatives  anchor down to Workforce Initiatives

Other Reports  anchor down to Other Reports

See Also

  • Measure Up: data briefs highlighting various higher education topics.


Minnesota Measures: Report on Higher Education Performance (2007-present)

Minnesota Measures 2017 pdf

Reports on the development of a higher education accountability system to help policy-makers and taxpayers gauge the effectiveness of the higher education sector in meeting state goals.

arrow up to top

College Readiness & Participation

Dual Credit and Exam-based Credit Acceptance Policies of Minnesota Colleges and Universities
Minnesota Statutes §136A.87(b) requires the Minnesota Office of Higher Education (OHE) to gather and share information related to institutional acceptance policies for concurrent enrollment courses, Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) courses, Advanced Placement (AP) courses, and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses for all colleges and universities in Minnesota. [release date: May 2017]

Intervention for College Attendance Program Reports
Provide information on the outcomes of the Intervention for College Attendance Program, which awards competitive grants to postsecondary institutions, professional organizations and community-based organizations.

Concurrent Enrollment Grant Program Report

Getting Prepared

Getting Prepared reports on recent high school graduates and college developmental enrollment activity.

Minnesota College Readiness Program Inventory

A survey of the landscape of college readiness programming and services across Minnesota. A summary of the data provided by 63 programs mainly serving high school and beginning college students. The report provides a context of the needs of college readiness to enhance the understanding of who is served and why these programs matter. [release date: November 2015]

Preparing Immigrant Students in Minnesota for Higher Education

Offers information about challenges that affect immigrant students' ability to access higher education or to succeed within it, as well as a summary of best practices and challenges faced by organizations that work with immigrant communities on these issues. [release date: December 2013]

Achieve Scholarship Spending on Expanding Access to Rigorous High School Courses

Briefly describes the activities at the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities and the University of Minnesota to expand access to rigorous courses and provide courses for college credit to high school students. [release date: February 2009]

Summer Academic Enrichment Program

[release date: January 2017]

arrow up to top

Financial Aid — General

Cumulative Student Loan Debt in Minnesota

This report details the number of students with loans by institution, the average cumulative student loan debt incurred at that institution, and the percentage of students with loans for the 2012-2016 academic years. [release date: November 2017]

Increasing Student Awareness of the FAFSA

A report to the Legislature on the policies and procedures adopted by institutions to increase student awareness of the need to complete a FAFSA application. [release date: March 2011]

Student Loan Default Rates in Minnesota (2005-present)

Annual data from the U.S. Department of Education on student default rates from federal loan programs.

Financial Aid Tuition Cap Study

Examines tuition levels and program offerings, student debt load, financial assistance and the impact of the tuition and fee maximum set in law relative to the Minnesota State Grant Program and any relationship between the maximums and tuition levels. [release date: November 2006]

Undergraduate Borrowing

Provides background information and trends in undergraduate borrowing. [release date: February 2006]

Impact of the Update to the Federal Needs Analysis on Minnesota Students

Estimates the aggregate projected impact of changes to the Federal Needs Analysis on Minnesota residents. [release date: January 2005]

arrow up to top


State Financial Aid Programs

Using Data to Determine Institutional Participation in State Student Aid Programs
The 2013 Minnesota Legislature mandated the Office of Higher Education to collect data and identify criteria that could be used to determine institutional eligibility to participate in state financial aid programs.

  • February 2015 proposes a framework of metrics for determining institutional participation in state financial aid program, lays out an implementation steps, and serves to highlight issues for consideration in moving forward.
  • February 2014 discusses the goals and priorities needed for this proposal, highlights existing criteria institutions must meet, and lays out a process for developing additional criteria based on institutional performance for participation in state financial aid.
  • Data Tables

Financial Aid Awarded to Undergraduates Attending Minnesota Institutions (1999-present)

Presents information on financial resources provided to undergraduates at Minnesota postsecondary institutions.

Minnesota State Grant Spending Projections (2008-present)

Projections of Minnesota State Grant Spending by fiscal year.

Minnesota State Grant Program End-of-Year Statistics (1997-present]

Reports on the number and dollar amounts of Minnesota State Grants received by Minnesota undergraduates.

Minnesota State Grant Part-Time Year 1 Review

This report presents the first year results of the two-year Part-Time Pilot study analyzing the Minnesota State Grant program eligibility/award formula change for undergraduates enrolled part time at Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU). The policy change centered on the determination of a family's ability to pay, or Assigned Family Responsibility (AFR), used to calculate an individual student's Minnesota State Grant award for part-time undergraduates as opposed to those enrolled full time. [63 pgs; release date: February 2015]

Minnesota State Grant Review (2008)

This report examines how Minnesota State Grants have responded to changing marketplace conditions and how the program is addressing the contemporary needs of Minnesota students.

Minnesota Achieve Scholarship Program Evaluation (2009-2011)

Evaluates the individuals participating in the Minnesota Achieve Scholarship Program.

Tuition Reciprocity Annual Reports, (2006-present)

Reports on tuition reciprocity enrollments, interstate payments and tuition rates.

Summer Transition Grant Evaluation Reports
Evaluations of the Summer Transition Grant program first implemented during the summer of 2010 for students who graduated from high school after December 31, 2009. Eligible students must attend programs offered by a Minnesota college in the summer between high school graduation and the freshman year of postsecondary education.

Assessing the feasibility of creating a SELF Loan Refinancing program

The report outlines OHE's tentative plan to offer the proposed pilot SELF Loan Refinancing program's framework, proposed timeline, and recommendations. [release date: January 2015]

Student Loan Repayment Counseling

A Lutheran Social Services report to the legislature on the effectiveness of student loan debt counseling services. [release date: January 2017]

Interest Rate Protection Agreement

Reports on the progress of the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to enter into interest rate exchange or swap agreements, hedges, forward purchase or sale agreements, or other comparable interest rate protection agreements with a third party. [release date: January 2009]

Teacher Shortage Loan Forgiveness Program

Produced in response to legislation passed in 2015 requiring the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to report annually on the Teacher Shortage Loan Forgiveness Program. The report must include the number of individuals who received loan forgiveness, the licensure areas and economic development regions in which the teachers taught, the average amount paid to a teacher participating in the program, and other summary data identified by the commissioner as outcome indicators.

  • 2020 [release date: February 2020]
  • 2019 [release date: February 2019]
  • 2018 [release date: January 2018]
  • 2017 [release date: February 2017]

arrow up to top

Student Enrollment

Study Abroad Health and Safety Regulation: Report to the 2015 Legislature

In 2014, the Minnesota Legislature passed legislation requiring postsecondary institutions to report on the health and safety of study abroad participants and directing the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to assess the appropriate state regulation of postsecondary study abroad programs. This report begins with an overview of study abroad in higher education, provides a summary of OHE's establishment of the new data collection process, and concludes with possible regulatory steps the Legislature may want to consider moving forward. [release date: January 2015]

A Discussion of Retention and Completion

The purpose of this report is to identify best practices that stakeholders in postsecondary education can put in place to improve retention and completion rates at postsecondary institutions across Minnesota. In doing so, this report will also identify existing barriers students face that potentially prevent them from completing their education. [release date: January 2015]

Basic Enrollment Data Series (1996-present)

Annual report with basic enrollment data for each postsecondary institution.

Educational Attainment Goal 2025

Working to increase the percent of Minnesotans age 25 to 44 who have attained a postsecondary certificate or degree to 70 percent by 2025

arrow up to top

Enrollment Patterns of Students from Low-Income Families

A report about postsecondary students in Minnesota who are from lower income families that explores the postsecondary education challenges these students may encounter compared to students who are not low income. [release date: Fall 2008]

Equity in Education and Job Connection Grant Program

Explains the process used to provide grants to Minnesota institutions to help them increase completion.

  • 2018 [release date: January 2018]
  • 2017 [release date: January 2017]

Minnesota Undergraduate Demographics

Characteristics of Postsecondary Students based on a U.S. Dept. of Education survey [release date: May 2006]

New Expectations, New Technologies: Alternative Learning Models for Minnesota

This paper focuses on potential strategies to facilitate degree completion, with special attention to the higher education experience for non-traditional students in Minnesota.

Increasing the College Completion of Underrepresented Students in STEM

The demand for expertise and professionals in the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) field is growing rapidly. In addition to this demand for STEM experts, the demographics of the nation are also shifting rapidly and the number of people of color is projected to continue to grow significantly over the next forty years. Although the demographics of the nation are shifting, this shift is not reflected in STEM fields, which has remained white and male dominated.

arrow up to top

Higher Education Financing & Costs

Bending the Cost Curve: Issues and Opportunities in higher Education Cost Containment from Student, Institutional, and State

Examines cost-containment strategies from state, institutional, and student perspectives. A number of gaps and alternative strategies for response are identified. These opportunities will be explored, and a series of recommendations made. [release date: March 2016]

Textbook Information Requirements

Produced in response to legislation passed during the 2009 Minnesota legislative session requiring the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to report on the "implementation of textbook information requirements under United States Code, Title 20, section 1015b, effective July 1, 2010." [release date: January 2010]

Alternative Formats for Student Instructional Materials

This report explores the idea of a network or national system to coordinate students' requests for postsecondary instructional material in alternative formats. [release date: January 2007]

Task Force to Study the Implementation of Higher Education Funding Policy

The 2005 Minnesota Legislature instructed the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to study the current postsecondary funding policy under Minnesota Statutes, sections 135A.01 to 135A.034 and to make specific recommendations regarding the enrollment adjustment. [release date: January 2006]

arrow up to top

Private Institutions

For-Profit Postsecondary Institutions: A Review of Selected Institutions in Minnesota for Undergraduates
For-Profit Postsecondary Institutions [optimized for grayscale printing]

For-Profit Postsecondary Institutions seeks to understand how undergraduates fare at Minnesota for-profit institutions when compared to both national for-profit institutions and Minnesota public and private not-for-profit institutions. [release date: May 2013]

Student Rights and Responsibilities at Graduate For-Profit Colleges and Universities in Minnesota

The Office of Higher Education (OHE) was directed by the Minnesota State Legislature to report on graduate for-profit colleges and universities regarding graduate student rights and responsibilities. [release date: January 2013]

Recommendations to Revise the Regulation of Private Postsecondary Institutions

The purpose of this report is to summarize the Minnesota Office of Higher Education's work to develop recommendations to revise the regulation of private postsecondary institutions in Minnesota and public postsecondary institutions located outside of Minnesota that offer instruction to residents in Minnesota pursuant to Minnesota Statutes Chapter 141 and Minnesota Statutes section 136A.61 to 136A.71. [release date: February 2006]

arrow up to top

Workforce Initiatives

Dual Training Competency Grant Annual Report

Produced in response to legislation passed in 2015 requiring the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to report annually on the Dual Training Grant Program. The report must, at a minimum, include research and analysis on the costs and benefits of the grants for employees and employers; the number of employees who commenced training and the number who complete training; and recommendations, if any, for changes to the program.

  • 2020 [release date: February 2020]
  • 2019 [release date: February 2019]
  • 2018 [release date: January 2018]
  • 2017 [release date: February 2017]

Financial Aid Incentives for Workforce Development

Examines existing financial aid programs that provide loans and grants to students, and the workforce needs in occupations that are currently in demand or are projected to be in demand in the future. [release date: February 2008]

MnSCU Two-Year Occupational Grant Pilot Program Report: Fall 2016

The MnSCU Two-Year Occupational Grant Pilot Program provides last dollar grant funding and mentoring to students enrolled in qualifying occupational programs at a Minnesota State two-year college. The program's intent is to provide select students the opportunity to complete a qualifying 1-2 year occupational program leading to employment in a high-demand occupation. [release date: April 2017]

arrow up to top

Other Reports

Preeminent Medical Discovery, Education, And Workforce for a Healthy Minnesota

Report from the Governor's Blue-Ribbon Commission on the University of Minnesota Medical School [release date: January 2015]

Spinal Cord Injury and Traumatic Brain Injury Grant Program Reports
The State of Minnesota established the Spinal Cord Injury and Traumatic Brain Injury Grant Program for institutions in Minnesota for research into new and innovative treatments and rehabilitative efforts for the functional improvement of people with spinal cord and traumatic brain injuries.

Student Parent Brief
Student parents are an important, and often overlooked group of students in the state. This brief looks at data on student parents, including incomes, demographics and enrollment patterns.

Teacher Education Report
In 2009, the Minnesota Legislature asked the Minnesota Office of Higher Education (OHE) and the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) to develop a report on teacher preparation. OHE contracted with MacCallum Ross Inc. and coordinated with MDE and the Minnesota Board of Teaching to design, gather information for and complete the report, which is available below in four sections. [release date: July 2010]

arrow up to top