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Fact Sheet

California’s Higher Education System

By Kevin Cook

The nation’s largest public system of higher learning is in California. Nearly 80% of state students attend a public institution, with over half enrolling in community college—making transfer into a four-year college a key path to a bachelor’s degree. Funds to support higher education and financial aid account for about 7% of the state’s budget.

Fact Sheet

College Readiness in California

By Iwunze Ugo, Laura Hill

More Californians are graduating from high school, but many graduates are underprepared for higher education and there are racial/ethnic and income disparities. Closing these gaps will require sustained efforts across the state's K–12 system.

Fact Sheet

College Access in California

By Iwunze Ugo

About three in five Californians enroll in college right after high school. But whether—and where—high school graduates attend college varies across regions and demographic groups.

Fact Sheet

Student Loan Debt in California

By Jacob Jackson, Darriya Starr

Student borrowing in California has declined markedly over the past decade. Borrowing rates vary across the state’s public and private institutions; undergraduates at public universities are least likely to borrow, while students who attend for-profit schools are more likely to struggle to pay off loans.

Fact Sheet

The Digital Divide in Education

By Darriya Starr, Joseph Hayes, Niu Gao

The pandemic spurred efforts to close longstanding gaps in digital access that affect African American, Latino, and lower-income students.

Fact Sheet

Immigrants and Education in California

By Hans Johnson, Cesar Alesi Perez, Marisol Cuellar Mejia

Educational attainment among California’s recent immigrants has risen markedly. Immigrants now make up 31% of California workers with at least a bachelor’s degree. However, immigrants also comprise an outsized share of workers with little formal education.

Fact Sheet

State Financial Aid in California

By Kevin Cook, Jacob Jackson, Courtney Lee

California’s financial aid programs help large numbers of middle- and low-income students attend college--but many are excluded by complex eligibility requirements, and most non-tuition costs are not covered.

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