Reimagining the Carnegie Classification Systems

American Council on Education, the Carnegie Foundation and the Carnegie Classification System

The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education is the leading framework for recognizing and describing institutional diversity among colleges and universities.

The American Council on Education (ACE) is now leading a broad, multi-stakeholder effort to reimagine the Carnegie Classifications as a catalyst for incentivizing and recognizing institutional behavior that advances equitable outcomes and learner-centered solutions.

The 2024 Carnegie Classifications will include an updated version of the Basic Classification in addition to a new Social and Economic Mobility Classification. This update to the Basic Classification will describe and classify an ever-evolving universe of institutions, with a particular focus on capturing the diversity of the community college sector and revisiting the research activity methodology. In the same way that the Basic Classification established research as a norm, the new Social and Economic Mobility classification will help colleges and universities to focus on both expanding access to students from a variety of backgrounds and on increasing learner outcomes in areas such as attainment, job placement, salary, and debt management.