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Higher Education Return on Investment Report


The pandemic has left a deep scar in the lives of many Coloradans. However, data suggests that those who seized the opportunity and completed a postsecondary education were protected from its social and economic impact. These Coloradans make more money over time and enjoy healthier lives. The findings in this year’s report show students and families the benefit postsecondary education brings to Coloradans. Furthermore, students and families can make critical choices in their path that allows them to maximize the value of their postsecondary credentials and minimize costs.


To assist lawmakers, taxpayers, students and families in understanding the value of postsecondary education in Colorado, H.B.18-1226, Higher Education Review Degree Program Costs and Outcomes, (opens in a new tab) directed the Colorado Department of Higher Education to publish an annual return on investment (ROI) report.

The benefits individuals receive from their postsecondary credentials and the costs they cover may vary depending on their academic choices and living circumstances. However, what does not vary is the increasing need for an educated workforce that goes beyond recovering the Colorado economy post-pandemic. Policymakers, institutions, students, and families are encouraged to explore the report to learn more about postsecondary pathways, return, cost, affordability and value.

Postsecondary Degree Earnings Outcomes Tools

This interactive tool depicts annual median earnings for Colorado graduates 1, 5 and 10 years following the completion of a credential. Use this tool to search for median earnings based on a field of study, credential level and institution.

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Downloadable Data