Fairfield University Elevated to Doctoral Professional Category in New Carnegie Classification

Fairfield University Elevated to Doctoral Professional Category in New Carnegie Classification

Fairfield graduates walking

The new category distinguishes Fairfield nationally, and reflects the academic strength and growth of our graduate and professional programs.

We are excited that this distinction reflects the evolution and innovation of our academic programs, in particular the growth of our graduate and professional programs

— Mark R. Nemec, PhD, Fairfield University President

The most recent update of the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education released this week, has elevated Fairfield University to the doctoral classification, as one of 73 new doctoral/professional institutions to be added to this category. Fairfield was formerly classified among master’s institutions.

“We are excited that this distinction reflects the evolution and innovation of our academic programs, in particular the growth of our graduate and professional programs,” said Mark R. Nemec, PhD, Fairfield University President. “With this recategorization by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, we are on the road to becoming a university of national prominence and reputation, and this path will continue to inform all of our strategic decision-making in the immediate future."

According to Carnegie's Basic Classification description, the doctoral category includes institutions “that awarded at least 20 research/scholarship doctoral degrees during the update year and also institutions with below 20 research/scholarship doctoral degrees that awarded at least 30 professional practice doctoral degrees in at least 2 programs.” 

The Carnegie Classification Update Public Review period began on December 15 when the public review version was released, and lasts approximately 6 weeks. The classification will be announced as official by the end of January 2022.

The Carnegie Classification has been the leading framework for recognizing and describing institutional diversity in higher education for almost 50 years. Beginning in 1970, the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education developed a classification of colleges and universities to support its program of research and policy analysis. This framework has been widely used in the study of higher education, both as a way to represent and control for institutional differences, and also in the design of research studies to ensure adequate representation of sampled institutions, students or faculty.

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