It's getting even tougher for students to get through four years of college and the latest obstacle is a lack of available courses due to budget cutbacks.
Deep cuts have forced colleges around the country to lay off instructors and eliminate some classes.
Combine that with increasing tuition and it drives up the cost of an education even more for students when they can't graduate on time.
A federal study of 1999-2000 graduates found it takes students roughly 4.5 years on average to earn a bachelor's degree. About two-thirds of traditional-age college students who finished got through within five. A study of 2009 graduates is not yet complete.
One department chairman at Cal State University-East Bay says he worries whether some students will graduate at all.