The number of degrees conferred by colleges and universities in Kentucky increased 1.2 percent this year, according to preliminary figures released Friday by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education.
Public and private institutions handed out 63,148 degrees and credentials in the 2013-2014 academic year, an increase of 60 percent over the past decade, according to the report.
"This is exceptionally good news for Kentucky," said CPE President Bob King. "The hard work of our students is being rewarded, and our campuses are adding value by creating a more highly-skilled workforce to strengthen Kentucky's economy."
The report showed growth at most levels, including undergraduate certificates and degrees at the associate, baccalaureate and doctoral levels.
Four-year degrees were up 3.4 percent overall, but private schools outpaced public colleges and universities by a wide margin, 9.6 percent to 1.6 percent.
Research doctorates jumped 10.2 percent at private and public schools in the past year, but master's degrees declined 6.8 percent.
"At the graduate and doctoral levels we are seeing more enrollment and are growing more in those areas right now than at the master's degree level," said Gary Cox, president of the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities.
The CPE will release a final report later this year.
Sam Osborne: (859) 231-3308 Twitter: @samo430