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About PERC

The mission of the Postsecondary Education Research Center (PERC) is to identify, conduct, and coordinate research on initiatives and ideas designed to enhance higher education at the institutional, state, and national levels to enhance policy and practice.

Diagram of PERC Oversight StructurePERC was founded in July 2017 as part of the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies in the College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

The center’s mission is critical to the improvement of higher education in Tennessee, particularly in progressing toward the state’s goal to have 55 percent of the state population holding a postsecondary education certificate or degree by 2025.

PERC focuses on the college completion agenda.

While PERC’s research spans a wide range of topics, the center’s highest priority is the completion agenda, or how postsecondary institutions (inclusive of technical colleges, community colleges, and universities) can retain and graduate more students in a timely manner. To this effect, PERC specializes in evaluating and recommending effective strategies to improve graduation rates, student outcomes, reduce student debt, and encourage retention of low-income students.

For more information, reach out to PERC or call 865.974.3972.