Graduate or Professional Degrees, Ages 25-64

Graduate and professional education can open greater opportunities for Louisvillians in the city’s educational and employment systems. Achieving a graduate or professional degree can positively impact an individual’s overall ability to thrive in their community, and growing up with caregivers who have achieved graduate or professional degrees increases a child’s likelihood to pursue secondary education.

Peer City Perspective

Louisville currently ranks 8th among its peer cities with 14.4% of working age individuals having earned a graduate or professional degree.

Louisville is in the middle of its peer group according to a natural breaks algorithm. Cities in green are those that outperform their peers, cities in yellow represent the middle cluster, and those in red are a group that lags behind its peers on this indicator.



Where are the Graduate or Professional Degrees in Louisville?

While nearly 14% of working age adults hold graduate or professional degrees in Louisville, the prevalence of degrees varies substantially across the city. In the map to the left, areas where more working age adults have post-baccalaureate degrees are purple, while areas where fewer working age adults hold post-baccalaureate degrees are blue and white. Similar to other maps of post-secondary degrees, there is a distinct divide between western and eastern Louisville.

Post-baccalaureate educational achievement is most concentrated Southeast Louisville where over 42% of the working age adult population have a graduate or professional degree. Conversely, the lowest concentration of earned post-baccalaureate degrees can be seen in the Portland, Russell and South Louisville neighborhoods, where less than 1% of working age adults have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Scroll over the map to see values for each census tract. Zoom in to see street names that form that boundaries of each tract.

Trends over time

Since 2000, Louisville continues to outpace the peer mean in the rate of graduate degree attainment. After topping the 75th percentile in 2014, the city fell back towards the peer mean in 2016 and currently sits at 13.6%. This is 0.3 percentage points above the peer mean.


Comparison Between the Most and Least Improved Cities

Working adults in Louisville and the most improved city, St. Louis, have obtained graduate degrees at a rate higher than the peer mean. Louisville has trailed behind. St. Louis since the year 2000. Currently, 13.6% of working adults in Louisville have a graduate degree. This is decrease from a high in 2014. Indianapolis, the least improved city has trailed behind the peer mean since 2000.

Differences Based on Race

Since the year 2000, Louisville has made no improvement narrowing the gap between white and Black graduate degree attainment. Both groups are currently below their respective peer means. Blacks in Louisville are currently further below their peer mean and whites in Louisville.

Differences Based on Sex

Since the year 2008, the gap between females and males in Louisville increased, overall. Currently, females in Louisville stand at 14.9%, above their peer mean, while males in Louisville stand 12.3%, slightly below their peer mean.