Renascence School Education News - private school

Thursday, March 26, 2015

How much should you pay for a degree?

The Hechinger Report – JOANNE JACOBS

“Does it pay to go to college? That largely depends on the student, said Robert Shireman, executive director of California Competes, a nonprofit focused on higher education. Students should ask themselves tough questions, he said. You’re not the average student. You’re you. What do you want from college? Do you have the academic skills and motivation to achieve your goals? With funding from the Lumina Foundation (which also funds The Hechinger Report), California Competes has proposed a “College Considerator” to help students think through these kinds of questions. Still in the alpha prototype version, the online tool focuses on the individual. It asks students about the rigor of their high school courses, their grades and their ACT or SAT scores, plus their approach to schoolwork, enjoyment of school and excitement about college.”(more)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Four Skills Every College Student Should Pursue

Courier Times – College Transitions Team

“A simplistic view of higher education is that people emerge from four years of college with a specific skill related to their primary area of study: Education majors learn how to teach, accounting majors learn how to crunch numbers, allied health majors learn skills particular to the healthcare profession, and so on down line. Yet, no matter your primary field of study, there are certain generalized skills that will serve you well in the modern economy where the average worker will change jobs an astonishing 11 times. Abilities in the areas of written expression, public speaking, foreign language, and quantitative analysis can and should be honed while pursuing a degree in any field…we now reside in a globalized marketplace where knowledge, trade, and investments know no borders. For anyone entering fields such as business, finance, information technology, software development, government, law enforcement, or healthcare (just to name a handful), fluency in a foreign language has never been more advantageous…Bi-lingual college grads entering the private sector right now can expect a 10-15% pay increase right off the bat; those conversant in Mandarin Chinese, German, Japanese, and Arabic may demand even higher compensation.”(more)

Friday, March 20, 2015

Cornell arts and sciences dean: Colleges must foster good citizenship

The Washington Post – Gretchen Ritter

“What is the purpose of college? Certainly it prepares students for careers and offers opportunities for learning and personal advancement that they may not get otherwise. But what other purpose does college serve? Like many leaders in higher education, I believe that we also have a responsibility to foster good citizenship, and I think that’s one of the most important contributions college can make to society. I want our graduates to be thoughtful, informed participants in debates over key public issues…How does college foster these attributes of good citizenship? There are three things that matter deeply here: knowledge, public orientation, and human understanding…a liberal arts education should equip graduates with an orientation to knowledge and learning that prompts them to venture into new knowledge areas with a critical acumen that will allow them to keep abreast of issues in a changing world.”(more)

UK Universities Gain Places on Top 100 List, US Slips

Education News – Kristin Decarr

“According to the recently-released 2015 Times Higher Education world reputation ratings, 12 of the world’s 100 most prestigious universities are located in the United Kingdom. The UK came in last year with 10 universities making the top 100. Harvard University came in yet again as the top school on the annual list of most prestigious universities in the world…The rankings this year continue to highlight a particular group of six institutions from the US and UK, labeling them as “super-brands”…In all, the US came in first with 26 universities out of the top 50 on the list and a total of 43 institutions on the complete list, although that number is down from 46 last year. Of the universities that made the most progress this year within the US, Columbia University came in 10th, up from 23 in 2011, the first year of the survey. New York University also made great strides, climbing to 20th place from outside the top 50 in 2011…The results come from the views of a global panel of leading academics.”(more)

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Reinventing Higher Education

The Huffington Post – Joshua Wyner

“Nearly half of all U.S. undergraduates are enrolled in community colleges. As a nation, we must both support these institutions and challenge them to improve their record of student success if community colleges are to fulfill their potential as drivers of economic growth and social mobility. The Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence was created to both recognize and challenge community colleges. A year-long process of research and analysis has enabled our expert selection committees to identify powerful examples of how the best community colleges are helping reinvent the delivery of higher education. Today we celebrate the 10 finalists for the 2015 prize…The 2015 winner, Santa Fe College in Gainesville, FL, shows how completion and transfer outcomes can be transformed. When students first enroll in community colleges, the degree they most aspire to is one the community college typically cannot deliver: a bachelor’s degree…The 2015 Aspen Prize winner Santa Fe College, in Florida, shows how a community college can help students transfer to a four-year school and receive a bachelor’s degree at a rate more than double the national average. Santa Fe has created clear, rigorous pathways to degrees at nearby University of Florida (UF). In addition to receiving strong advising and experiencing a highly visible UF presence on the Santa Fe campus, students are aided during class registration by unique technology that enables them to align their course choices with transfer requirements (and avoid missteps along the way).”(more)

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Is the purpose of college to get an education or a job?

SmartBlog on Education – Katharine Haber

“Is the purpose of college to get an education or a job? Debate over this question is not new, but a new answer is needed, said Jeffrey Selingo, professor of practice at Arizona State University, during his presentation, “Redesigning the Overworked Bachelor’s Degree.” Selingo, a former editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education, envisions a redesigned bachelor’s degree that addresses the need to provide students with a broad education, yet also provides them with the practical skills they need to land their first job in the 21st century. Under a new model, programs would provide students with skills in areas such as problem solving, decision making, critical thinking and analytical reasoning — skills some employers say are lacking in today’s college graduates…While some schools may be forced to make such changes to survive, Selingo explained that a number of higher-education institutions already are piloting innovative alternatives to the bachelor’s degree that are designed to better meet the needs of today’s economy.”(more)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

America’s High-Risk, High-Reward Higher Education System

Forbes – Andrew Kelly

“Last month, the Educational Testing Service (ETS) added to a familiar refrain, releasing a new report on how American Millennials lag behind their peers in other countries on measures of literacy, numeracy, and “problem-solving in technology rich environments.” Using data from the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC), the authors showed that American Millennials ranked at the bottom in both numeracy and problem-solving. Fully 64 percent of Americans scored below the lowest proficiency rating on the numeracy exam, compared to about 1/3 of Millennials in places like Finland, the Netherlands, and Japan. The picture wasn’t much brighter among young workers with bachelors and graduate degrees. On the numeracy exam, American BA holders outscored their peers in only two countries—Italy and Poland. Those with grad degrees outscored counterparts in Italy, Poland, and Spain.”(more)

Monday, February 23, 2015

A Discussion On Higher Education Accountability

Forbes – John Ebersole

“A recent New York Times op-ed, “How to hold colleges accountable,” lists a number of problems with contemporary higher education and offers the solution of greater accountability. While I commend the authors, Jon Cowan and Jim Kessler of the Washington think tank Third Way for their multi-dimensional assessment, their conclusion warrants further discussion, along with acknowledgement of progress already being made. These authors present their concerns under three umbrella headings – quality of instruction, outcome transparency, and financial aid. In looking at each, there is much to applaud. For instance they hit the mark in regard to the uneven quality of teaching and its impact on retention. As MIT president Rafael Reif noted in his 2013 remarks at the World Economic Forum in Davos, “We have spectacular researchers [at MIT] who are lousy teachers.” Many can relate to Reif’s assessment as they think of the need to endure, the relentless monotone of a brilliant professor reading from notes or dense slides. Yet, how can we be critical when the average classroom instructor has had no formal training or preparation. The fact that 80% of faculty are not using innovative teaching methods (per the cited Gates study) is neither surprising, nor defensible.”(more)

Friday, February 13, 2015

After years of growth, foreign language enrollment declines in N.C. colleges

Triangle Business Journal – Jason deBruyn

“After years of solid growth, enrollment in foreign-language courses in North Carolina has declined…Nationwide, enrollment declined 6.7 percent since 2009 after growing steadily for 20 years….In an interview with the Chronicle of Higher Education, Rosemary G. Feal, the MLA’s executive director, speculated that several factors could have played a role in the decline, including rising student interest in career-oriented subjects such as business in the wake of the recession. Those studies leave less time for language classes, Feal told the Chronicle. As the business world becomes increasingly global, several surveys have found that employers value job seekers who can speak multiple languages. The growth of the Chinese economy in particular has affected interest in the language. The number of institutions reporting enrollments in Chinese, for example, has more than doubled, from 412 in 1990 to 866 in 2013, and the enrollments in Chinese have more than tripled, from 19,427 in 1990 to 61,055 in 2013, according to MLA. Likewise, while 17 percent of reporting institutions taught Chinese in 1990, 36 percent showed enrollments in Chinese in 2013.”(more)

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Youths Must Be Trained For High-Tech Jobs

The Hartford Courant – Bruce Dixon

“The Obama administration has emphasized the critical need to prepare American students for future job opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math — or STEM. The president is right to make STEM a national priority. Yet he must be careful to also back critical efforts by industry to develop the next generation of high-tech workers. Our leaders must not only support STEM education, but those who create jobs and drive growth in a technology-based economy. Even as the economy is still recovering, workers with a background in STEM subjects are in high demand. Between 2000 and 2010, high-tech jobs grew three times faster than opportunities in other fields. There are now 2.8 STEM jobs for every unemployed person in Connecticut, and by 2018, the state will have an astonishing 116,000 positions to fill.”(more)