Despite gradual increases in U.S. higher education participation and attainment over the last half century, this annual report from The Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education of the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) and the University of Pennsylvania Alliance for Higher Education and Democracy (PennAHEAD) finds persistent inequity throughout the U.S. higher education system.

These intersecting inequities contribute to the United States having lower rates of increase and a lower rate of widening participation in educational attainment than other developed nations. Between 2000 and 2020, the United States fell from second to 16th among OECD countries in bachelor’s attainment among individuals between the age of 25 to 34. The 2022 Indicators Report has a theme of “Re-Imagining Higher Education as a Human Right” to inspire change toward overcoming these negative trends.