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Where the College Scorecard Has Gained Traction So Far — and Where It Hasn’t

The Department of Education’s College Scorecard is, at its core, a simple college-search tool that highlights key data points with a few clicks. The most-talked-about piece: the average salary of students who attended a college, 10 years after they first enrolled.

Each college’s profile also features its average annual cost, academic offerings, and graduation and retention rates, among other things. (Only students who receive federal financial aid are included in the data.)

Department officials released the revamped tool last September, as a replacement for the Obama administration’s controversial college-ratings plan. When they did so, they said the new Scorecard would ensure that students, particularly those from low-income and first-generation backgrounds, had access to reliable information.