Student Achievement

Mercer's accrediting body, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) requires that each institution "publish statements of its goals for student achievement and success of students in achieving those goals" (Policy on Institutional Obligations for Public Disclosure). The information below is provided to meet that publication requirement.

Much of the following is also published on individual program websites or the University's Federal Disclosure Website. Consumers who seek information related to the Student-Right-to-Know and Campus Security Act or the Higher Education Opportunity Act are encouraged to visit those sites.

Retention and Graduation Rates

The University monitors retention and graduation rates as measure of success of its undergraduate programs. Mercer has several distinct programs for undergraduate students. The rates that follow are specific to first-time, full-time students in our traditional program on the Macon campus. The traditional program is a daytime program geared toward traditional age, first-time college students. 

Retention Rate

Threshold: 80%
Goal by 2018: 87%
Actual retention rate for the fall 2015 cohort: 87.5%

Graduation Rate

Graduation rates are measured by calculating the percentage of an entering fall cohort that graduates from Mercer within 6 years.

Threshold: 60%
Goal by 2018: 75%

Actual graduation rate for the fall 2010 cohort: 66.6%

Some of the students in our traditional program take longer than six years to complete, or decide to transfer out of Mercer to other institutions that they feel are a better fit for them and their academic goals. The following graph gives a more comprehensive picture of where the fall 2008 cohort students were on their path to earning a postsecondary degree at six years.

Fall 2010 Cohort First-time, Full-time Status at Year 6

student achievement

Methodology: Students in the cohort are counted in one category only in the hierarchy shown in the graph. Enrollment and graduation from other postsecondary institutions was obtained from the National Student Clearinghouse StudentTracker service and covers both 2- and 4-year institutions. The rates may differ from rates reported elsewhere under different reporting definitions.

Licensure and Certification Examinations

Mercer's professional schools and programs monitor test scores and pass rates on licensure and certification examinations as measures of student achievement. Some programs are required to publish pass rates and certification information as a part of their specialized accreditation, and you can find links to that programmatic information below.

College of Pharmacy – Doctor of Pharmacy Program

North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) (2016)
Threshold: 2 standard deviations below National Pass Rate
Goal: Exceed National Pass Rate (+87.78%)

Actual: 82.81%

Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam (MPJE) (2016)
Threshold: Meet National Pass Rate (83.77%)
Goal: Exceed National Pass Rate (+83.77%)

Actual: 76.29% (testing for GA), 92.86% (testing for another state)

Georgia Baptist College of Nursing – Bachelor and Master of Science in Nursing Programs

National Council Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX – RN) (2016)
American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) Family Nurse Practitioner National Certification (2015 - none taking the exam in 2016)

American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Board Certification (2015)

Threshold: 80%
Goal: 90%
Actual NCLEX – RN (Baccalaureate): 91%
Actual AANP (Master's): 89%

Actual ANCC (Master's): 100%

School of Medicine – Doctor of Medicine Program

U.S. Medical Licensing Examinations (USMLE Step Exams) (2015-16)
Threshold: 90%
Goal: Meet or Exceed National Pass Rate (Step 1: 96%; Step 2 CK: 96%; Step 2 CS: 97%)
Actual Step 1: 93% (interim results)
Actual Step 2 CK: 97% (interim results)

Actual Step 2 CS: 92% (interim results)

School of Medicine – Marriage and Family Therapy Program

Association of Marriage and Family Therapy Regulatory Board (AMFTRB) Examination in Marital and Family Therapy (2012)
Threshold: 70%
Goal: 90%

Actual: 100%

The Regulatory Board only reports pass rate information to state licensing boards, so institutions currently do not receive official licensure test results on their graduates but must rely on their own follow-up with their former students.

College of Health Professions – Physical Therapy Program

National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) (2015)
Threshold: 90%
Goal: 100%

Actual: 96.8%

College of Health Professions – Physician Assistant Program

Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE) (2016)
Threshold: 90%
Goal: Exceed National Pass Rate (+96% for 2015)

Actual: 100%

Tift College of Education – Bachelor of Science in Education and Master of Arts in Teaching Programs

Georgia Assessment for Certification of Educators – Content Exams (GACE) (2015-16)
Threshold: 80%
Goal: 95%

Actual: 96.6%

Penfield College – Counseling Program

National Counselor Examination (NCE) (Spring 2016)
Threshold: Meet the NCE National Mean Score (94.22)
Goal: Exceed National Mean Score of CACREP institutions (+112.91)
Actual CMHC Program: 113.90 (95% Pass Rate)

Actual SCHOOL Program: 121.60 (100% Pass Rate)

Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE) (Spring 2017)
Threshold: Meet the CPCE National Mean Score (85.67)
Goal: Exceed National Mean Score by 5 points (+90.67)

Actual: 97.47 (100% Pass Rate)

School of Engineering – Bachelor of Science in Engineering Program

National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) Fundamentals of Engineering Examination (2016)
Threshold: Meet National Pass Rate (73%)
Goal: Exceed National Pass Rate (+73%)

Actual: 90%

School of Law - Juris Doctor Program

Georgia Bar Examination (July 2016)
Threshold: Meet State Pass Rate (72.4%)
Goal: Exceed State Pass Rate (+72.4%)

Actual: 67.7%

Post Graduate Placement Rates

Post-graduation information is collected most thoroughly for those professional programs required to report placement statistics to their accrediting agencies.Below is placement information for Medicine and Law.

School of Law – Percent of Graduates Employed or Pursuing Graduate Degrees Full-time (2015)

Threshold: 78%
Goal: 90%

Actual: 82.6%

School of Medicine – Percent Initial and Secondary Match for Residency (2016)

Threshold: 100% Match (Initial and Secondary)
Goal: 100% Initial Match
Actual Initial Match: 95%

Actual Initial and Secondary: 98%