Educational attainment

Educational attainment is a powerful predictor of well-being. There is a strong correlation between educational attainment of a state’s workforce and wages in the state. Regions with higher concentrations of highly educated residents tend to perform better across many socioeconomic indicators, including the crime rate, poverty, productivity, and unemployment.

Click "Change Filter" in the above chart to view data prior to 2012.


Adults with a Bachelor's degree in Clark Co. in 2017


Adults with a Bachelor's degree in Nevada in 2017


Adults with a Bachelor's degree in the U.S. in 2017

Educational attainment in Southern Nevada trending up, still trails national level

Southern Nevadans have never been more educated. Roughly one-quarter (24.4 percent) of all adults 25 or older in the region have at least a Bachelor's degree, the region's highest level since the U.S. Census Bureau began tracking educational attainment.

However, while the educational attainment rate in Southern Nevada has steadily increased over the past decade, the region still falls well below the national levels. Approximately one-third (32 percent) of all adults in the U.S. 25 and older have a Bachelor's degree or higher, which also represents a record high.

The increasing levels of educational attainment both nationally and in Southern Nevada is also reflected in the declining percentage of the adult population who never graduated from high school (see chart at right).

Twelve percent of the U.S. population 25 and older don't have a high school diploma; In Southern Nevada, the percentage is nearly two percentage points higher, at 13.9 percent.

See the map below to view educational attainment rates in Southern Nevada at the block group level. 

Click "Change Filter" above to view data prior to 2012.

While educational attainment is on the rise, large disparities in attainment exist between racial and ethnic subgroups, both locally and nationally. The levels of Asian and white adults with at least a Bachelor's degree far exceed those of their black, Hispanic, and American Indian peers (see chart at right). 

Disparities within racial and ethnic subgroups also exist between Southern Nevadans and adults nationally. The most pronounced difference is within the Asian subgroup, where 52 percent of Asians in the U.S. have at least a Bachelor's degree, while only 37 percent in Southern Nevada do.

Click on a block group for additional socioeconomic information. Click the top-right buttons to view the map legend and to change various map settings.

Source: American Community Survey (ACS), 5-year estimates (2012-2016): Confidence level: 90 percent

About the data

The U.S. Census Bureau collects information on a variety of educational topics using several national surveys and programs. It collects information from individuals regarding their school experiences, and directly from schools or the government agencies that help manage them. Here you can learn about the surveys and programs. The above data is from the American Community Survey (ACS).

Educational attainment refers to the highest level of education that an individual has completed. This is distinct from the level of schooling that an individual is attending.

The American Community Survey (ACS), administered by the Census Bureau, offers comprehensive information on social, economic, and housing characteristics and because of its large sample size – about 2.9 million addresses per year – the ACS is useful for subnational analyses, serving as the best source for survey-based state level income and poverty estimates.

The ACS provides single-year estimates of income and poverty for all places, counties, and metropolitan areas with a population of at least 65,000 as well as the nation and the states, and provides estimates for all geographies, including census tracts and block groups using data pooled over a five-year period. Both single and five-year estimates are updated every year.

To learn more about income in Southern Nevada or for additional information on the data presented above, contact Southern Nevada Strong.

Last updated: October 2018