After years of leaning on tuition increases to make up for declining state support, about four in 10 public universities now report tuition revenue is not keeping pace with inflation, according to a new report by Moody’s Investors Service.
Moody’s surveyed 114 four-year public universities and 173 four-year privates and found that negative trends — inability to raise prices, declining enrollments and heightened regulatory and political pressure to keep down tuition — are “now buffeting public universities with greater intensity.
For years, George Washington University, one of the country’s most expensive colleges, promised families they didn’t consider income in the admissions process while secretly rejecting students who couldn’t afford tuition
The $6,600 master’s degree marks an attempt to realize the tantalizing promise of the MOOC movement: a great education, scaled up to the point where it can be delivered for a rock-bottom price. Until now, the nation’s top universities have adopted a polite but distant approach toward MOOCs. The likes of Yale, Harvard, and Stanford have put many of their classes online for anyone to take, and for free. But there is no degree to be had, even for those who ace the courses. Education writer and consultant Tony Bates recently noted that until top institutions begin putting a diploma behind their MOOCs, “we have to believe that they think that this is a second class form of education suitable only for the unwashed masses.
Schools frequently acquire digital devices without discrete learning goals and ultimately use these devices in ways that fail to adequately serve students, schools, or taxpayers,” wrote Ulrich Boser, a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and the author of the report.
For those with an interest in the virtues and vices of thinking about education in terms of entertainment:
Participants in the study watched a short (one minute) video of a speaker explaining the genetics of calico cats. There were two versions of the video.
- In the fluent speaker video, the speaker stood upright, maintained eye contact with the camera, and spoke fluidly without notes.
- In the disfluent speaker video, the speaker stood behind the desk and leaned forward to read the information from notes. She did not maintain eye contact and she read haltingly.
The participants rated the fluent lecturer as more effective. They also believed they had learned more from the fluent lecturer. But when it came time to take the test, the two groups did equally well.
As the study’s authors put it, ‘Appearances Can Be Deceiving: Instructor Fluency Increases Perceptions of Learning Without Increasing Actual Learning.” Or, as Inside Higher Ed put it, when it comes to lectures, Charisma Doesn’t Count, at least not for learning. Perhaps these findings help explain why people love TED talks.
More on this study is here, including information on another study with similarly fascinating results.
More from me on the whole “edutainment” phenomenon in higher education.
In addition to choosing which students to serve, the university community must recognize students as primary constituents and the job of mentoring them as being equally or more important than any other, including discovery research. Except in the case of the most elite research institutions, the university that does not view serving students as its primary mission is doomed to decline. The problem is not just the lower instructional costs of the for-profit educators. It is also the rise of focused research enterprises. Employees of purely discovery-focused corporate R&D groups and governmen…
Coding will be the key to innovation in the future but many students, but especially low-income students, aren’t exposed to it,” she says. Tech moguls including Bill Gates, Google’s Eric Schmidt and Meg Whitman from Hewlett-Packard agree with her. They’ve thrown their weight behind Code.org, a new nonprofit whose “learn to code” videos have gone viral. They say that coding, programming and computer science will be the language of the 21st century. “In a world that’s increasingly run on technology, computer science is a liberal art that every student should be exposed to, regardless of their path in life,” says Code.org’s Hadi Partovi. Labor economists say Partovi might be right. By 2020, the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics is projecting that 778,000 computer jobs will be created. “That is substantial growth that is expected to outpace the growth of the overall economy,” says Martin Kohli, a chief regional economist there. Jan Cuny, who oversees the National Science Foundation’s CS10K initiative, a $40 million program aimed at getting more computer science teachers in high school classroom, says those projections are low. She estimates that 1.4 million jobs—and 60 percent of the STEM jobs of the future—will require computing skills. They are good jobs too. In 2012, according to the BLS, the average salary for a computer programmer was about $80,000. (By comparison, the average wage for American workers is $45,800.)
Lending standards have gotten suffocatingly tight in the wake of the housing bust, and young people with too much student debt compared to their income, or who’ve fallen behind on their loan payments, may simply be unable to qualify for a mortgage. As the Fed noted, student borrowers now also have worse credit scores, on average, than their ed-debt-free peers.
See on Scoop.it - Knowmads, Infocology of the future
Michael Cusumano, a professor at M.I.T., raises doubts about the ultimate cost to the education field of massive open online courses, or MOOCs.
That the acronym MOOCs rhymes with “nukes” seems apt. Massive open online courses, or MOOCs — led by two profit-making start-ups, Coursera and Udacity, founded by entrepreneurial Stanford professors — are a new disruptive force in education. Leading universities have scrambled to join or offer alternatives like edX, a collaboration of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University and others.
The MOOCs movement has been greeted with equal parts enthusiasm and angst. The MOOC champions predict a technology-fueled revolution in the distribution and democratization of high-quality education. The MOOC skeptics have a variety of qualms, but especially about what is lost in the retreat of face-to-face teaching — a point eloquently made by Andrew Delbanco, a professor of American studies at Columbia University, in an article in the current New Republic, “MOOCs of Hazard.”
Michael A. Cusumano, a professor at the Sloan School of Management at M.I.T., raises a different issue in an essay published this week: the economics of MOOCs and the implications.
His article appears in Communications of the ACM, the monthly magazine of the Association for Computing Machinery, and he had circulated a version of it earlier to his M.I.T. colleagues. After reading it, L. Rafael Rief, M.I.T.’s president, asked Mr. Cusumano to serve on a task force on the “residential university” of the future, including online initiatives.
“My fear is that we’re plunging forward with these massively free online education resources and we’re not thinking much about the economics,” Mr. Cusumano said in an interview.
The MOOC champions, Mr. Cusumano said, are well-intentioned people who “think it’s a social good to distribute education for free.”
But Mr. Cusumano questions that assumption. “Free is actually very elitist,” he said. The long-term future of university education along the MOOC path, he said, could be a “few large, well-off survivors” and a wasteland of casualties.
See on bits.blogs.nytimes.com
On every campus we need large, highly visible vegetable gardens that are tended by everyone who likes to eat; cafeterias that provide, insofar as they can, only local foods; compost heaps steaming next to these cafeterias to remind us to pay our debt to the soil. We need administrators committed to dismantling, not enlarging, our vast system of technological dependencies, and professors committed to living defensibly and responsibly and competently before their students. Our foreign studies programs must become local studies programs. Our new buildings must be made to run on energy sources that will still be available when the buildings turn fifty or a hundred. We can’t ignore the problem of ecological illiteracy any longer. It must become a prominent curricular concern all across higher education. And no one should graduate who doesn’t know what oil has done for us—and especially what it has done to us: made us fat, lazy, stupid, and incompetent. This won’t cut it.