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Measures, Targets, and Related Indicators

An important part of The Plan is measuring progress toward becoming the best educated state by 2030. Six measures and accompanying targets are designed to guide the Council as it monitors progress toward achievement of the goals and strategies and implementation of initiatives. In addition, 15 related indicators serve as “building blocks” for the measures.  The set of indicators is intended to be dynamic, thus creating opportunities to add new and revise existing ones during the years of plan implementation as appropriate. 

Summary of Measures and Targets

By 2030, more Virginians will graduate with high quality credentials without excessive debt. The Commonwealth, through its public and private colleges and universities, will award 1.5 million degrees and workforce credentials, improve student success, and increase by 30 percent Virginia’s share of research expenditures.


Measure: Undergraduate degrees and workforce credentials awarded to students
Target: 1.5 million total awards, including those that close the gap in unfilled jobs in high-demand occupations

Student Success

Measure: Completion rates of students
Target: Annual improvement in completion rates of students that closes the success gap between underrepresented populations (URP) and non-URP students by 2030
(Note: URP students meet one or more of: non-White, Pell grant recipient, age 25 or older, from a VA locality with low undergraduate attainment rates.)


Measure: Financial resources available to a student as a percentage of the cost of attendance
Target: 50 percent for a student from a low- or middle-income family
(Note: Financial resources represent expected family contribution, federal and state grants and exclude loans, scholarships, work, and institutional aid. The cost of attendance includes transportation, room and board, tuition and fees, supplies, books and other expenses.)

Research Activity

Measure: Virginia academic-research expenditures as a percentage (share) of the US total
Target: A share of 30 percent larger than in federal FY2013


Measure: Tuition and fees of in-state undergraduates as a percentage of family income
Target: lower than the national average; less than 10 percent of income for low- and middle-income students

Economic Prosperity

Measure: Wages of graduates in the workforce
Target: 75 percent of graduates earn sustainable wages three years after graduation
(Note: The definition of sustainable wages is consistent with the lower end of the range for middle income, as recommended by the Higher Education Advisory Committee and approved by Council in 2011.)

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