College of the Desert

  • COD is a two-year, public institution that provides lower division academic, vocational, and basic skills education. We are a successful college because we make decisions based on a systematic assessment of the needs of the community and the application of our core values.
School Highlights
  • College of the Desert serves 9,719 students (37% of students are full-time).
  • The college's student:teacher ratio of 48:1 is higher than the state community college average of 44:1.
  • Minority enrollment is 71% of the student body (majority Hispanic), which is more than the state average of 68%.
  • College of the Desert is one of 9 community colleges within Riverside County, CA.
  • The nearest community college to College of the Desert is Mayfield College (5.5 miles away).

Top Placements

College of the Desert places among the top 20% of community colleges in California for:

School Overview

  • The teacher population of 204 teachers has declined by 12% over five years.
College of the Desert(CA) Community College Avg.
Institution LevelAt least 2 but less than 4 yearsAt least 2 but less than 4 years
Institution ControlPublicPublic
Total Faculty204 staff97 staff
College of the Desert Total Faculty (2007-2016)

Student Body

  • The student population of College of the Desert has grown by 5% over five years.
  • The student:teacher ratio of 48:1 has stayed the same over five years.
  • The College of the Desert diversity score of 0.58 is less than the state average of 0.73. The school's diversity has grown by 7% over five years.
Total Enrollment9,719 students7,516 students
College of the Desert Total Enrollment (2007-2016)
Student : Teacher Ratio48:144:1
College of the Desert Student Staff Ratio (2007-2016)
# Full-Time Students3,613 students1,613 students
College of the Desert Full-Time Students (2007-2016)
# Part-Time Students6,106 students5,903 students
College of the Desert Part-Time Students (2007-2016)
College of the Desert Enrollment Breakdown CA All Enrollment Breakdown
% American Indian/Alaskan
College of the Desert American Indian/Alaskan (2007-2013)
% Asian
College of the Desert Asian (2007-2016)
% Hispanic
College of the Desert Hispanic (2007-2016)
% Black
College of the Desert Black (2007-2016)
% White
College of the Desert White (2007-2016)
% Two or more races
College of the Desert More (2011-2016)
% Non Resident races
College of the Desert Non Resident (2007-2016)
% Unknown races
College of the Desert Ethnicity Breakdown CA All Ethnic Groups Ethnicity Breakdown
Diversity Score0.580.73
College of the Desert Diversity Score (2007-2016)
College Completion Rate
College of the Desert Completion Rates for First-Time, Full-Time Students (2007-2015)
Average Graduate Earnings (10 Years)$34,600$34,600
College of the Desert Average and Median Earnings, Disaggregated by Student Subgroups (2008-2013)

Finances and Admission

  • The public in-state tuition of $1,316 is less than the state average of $1,636. The in-state tuition has grown by 27% over four years.
  • The public out-state tuition of $6,832 is more than the state average of $6,797. The out-state tuition has grown by 16% over four years.
In-State Tuition Fees$1,316$1,636
College of the Desert In-State Tuition Fees (2007-2016)
Out-State Tuition Fees$6,832$6,797
College of the Desert Out-State Tuition Fees (2007-2016)
% Students Receiving Some Financial Aid78%78%
College of the Desert % Students Receiving Some Financial Aid (2007-2016)
Median Debt for Graduates$5,500$9,500
College of the Desert Median debt for students who have completed (2007-2015)
Median Debt for Dropouts$4,756$5,500
College of the Desert Median debt for students who have not completed (2007-2015)
Source: 2016 (or latest year available) IPEDS

School Notes

  • College of the Desert offers two types of academic tracks; (1) lower division transfer courses required for most majors and professions at four-year universities or colleges and, (2) a wide variety of curricular offerings designed to meet the needs of those preparing for immediate employment, for those who are currently employed and need to upgrade their skills, or for those who are interested in a job retraining program and personal development.The Center for Training and Development provides a variety of unique programs and services designed to assist in the growth and stability of both area businesses and the College itself.The Walter N. Marks Center for the Arts is a nonprofit cultural and educational facility located on College of the Desert's campus. Committed to educational excellence, The Marks Center provides a venue for artistic exploration, experimentation and research. Traditional formats of painting, drawing, sculpture ceramics, photography and printmaking are complemented by contemporary applications in papermaking, book arts, performance and installation arts. College of the Desert is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, an institutional accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the U.S. Department of Education.

Nearby Schools

  • The nearest community college to College of the Desert is Mayfield College (5.5 miles away).
  • College Location Mi. Students
  • 509 students | 5.50 Mi35-325 Date Palm Drive
    Cathedral City CA  92234
  • Kaplan College-Palm Springs
    Private, for profit
    379 students | 8.50 Mi2475 E Tahquitz Canyon Way
    Palm Springs CA  92262
  • 1,652 students | 28.00 Mi6162 Rotary Way
    Joshua Tree CA  92252
  • 14,580 students | 33.20 Mi1499 N. State St.
    San Jacinto CA  92583
  • 5,932 students | 45.30 Mi11711 Sand Canyon Road
    Forest Falls CA  92339
Recent Articles
The Online Education Initiative will greatly expand course offerings for community college students, while making the transfer process between institutions much more smooth. The Initiative has its critics, however, who decry the loss of local control over education.
A recent study reveals that job applicants with a credential or associate’s degree from a community college have slightly better chances of getting a job interview than students who attend a for-profit college or university. Since community colleges are much more budget friendly than for-profit institutions and have much better job placement results, community colleges are a much better option for employment-minded students.
After City College of San Francisco loses its accreditation, other community colleges in the state are facing warnings, sanctions and possible loss of accreditation as well.
Did You Know?
For California public community colleges, the average tuition is approximately $1,636 per year for in-state students and $6,797 for out-of-state students. For private community colleges, the average yearly tuition is approximately $19,157 per year. Read more about average community college tuition costs across the country.

The average community college acceptance rate in California is 84%. Read more about national community college acceptance rates.

California community colleges have a diversity score of 0.73, which is higher than the national average of 0.65. The most diverse community college in California is Berkeley City College. Read more about community college diversity statistics in the USA.