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A new analysis from the American Council on Education found higher graduation rates at minority-serving institutions than federal data suggests. The report from ACE, which is higher education's umbrella group, was based on data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, which can give more detail than is often found in federal data sets.

Colleges can be deemed to be minority serving by the federal government based on their original purpose when established or on certain enrollment thresholds. Over all, minority-serving institutions enroll 4.8 million students, according to the new report, which is roughly 28 percent of the nation's total enrollment.

The report found a 43 percent completion rate for students who started college at public, four-year historically black colleges and universities in 2007. That number climbs to 62 percent for full-time students, compared to a federal graduation rate of 34 percent.

The completion rate for full-time students at public, two-year Hispanic-serving institutions was 40 percent, according to the report, compared to the federal rate of 26 percent. The total completion rate at public, four-year Hispanic-serving institutions was roughly 50 percent, while the full-time rate was 74 percent.