Education News – Kristin Decarr
“A new report released by the Urban Institute in Washington, DC has examined the cost of higher education in all 50 states and the reasons behind the various stages of affordability. The report, “Financing Public Higher Education: Variation Across States,” found Wyoming to be the most affordable state to earn a bachelor’s degree in. Authors Sandy Baum and Martha Johnson determined the state to have the lowest tuition for residents enrolled in a four-year program and the eighth lowest community college tuition in the nation. According to the report, tuition at a four-year school costs students who live in Wyoming an average of $4,646 per academic year. Meanwhile, New Hampshire was found to have the highest tuition in the country, charging $14,712 per academic year. Wyoming has the second-highest level of funding per full-time student, offering more than $15,000 per student each year.”(more)
U.S. News & World Report – Lauren Camera
“A sweeping report about the state of education across the globe shows that overall, countries are making big strides on several important education indicators, from prekindergarten through the higher education space and into the workplace. But compared to many industrialized countries, the U.S. is lagging in a number of areas, according to “Education at a Glance 2015,” the 600-page report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, or OECD. For example, the U.S. still ranks high when it comes to the number of people earning degrees, but other countries are catching up, and tuition in other countries is nowhere near as pricey. On the K-12 front, educators in the U.S. teach for longer hours, but get paid less. And the U.S. ranks at the bottom when it comes to the number of children attending an early childhood education program.”(more)
News Herald – Juliann Talkington
In the End of the University As We Know It, Nathan Harden asserts that access to a college-level education will be free and available to everyone on the planet; the bachelor’s degree will become increasingly irrelevant; the residential college experience will all but disappear; ten of thousands of professors will lose their jobs; and well-known and and respected universities like MIT, Stanford, and Harvard will enroll ten of millions of students.
Are Harden’s forecasts likely?
Technology has removed the geographic and time barriers to education. Students can listen to lectures real-time or save them for later viewing. Textbooks are available in electronic format. Groups can meet electronically for academic exchanges. Exams can be given electronically and will become accurate assessments of student proficiency as security issues are resolved.
Universities can and are extending their reach to students around the world at a fraction of the cost of what it takes to bring professors and students together on a physical college campus. A free college education is unlikely, but a very low cost college alternative is almost a certainty.
Technology has rendered many bachelor’s degrees useless. Rather than no bachelor’s degree, the degree will probably change form and name to note a broader, more well rounded education (advanced technical, humanities blend). The narrowing bachelor’s degree requirements will mean many students will opt for specialized, job specific, course-by-course certifications rather than a bachelor’s degree.
Technology has and will continue to change the classroom model. Professors can effectively lecture to millions of students at one time. This means only a small number of the best teaching professionals will be employed. In this new environment, prestige will be important. Top schools like MIT and Stanford will have millions of students and many lesser known schools will be forced to close.
Research at top universities will probably continue. The professors that had to endure teaching assignments to conduct cutting edge research will be able to spend all their time in the lab.
It is unlikely that the residential college experience will completely vanish. However, it will probably be limited to high profile universities and be embraced by a small segment of the population that is willing to pay a premium for contacts and networking.
With the radical changes coming to post secondary education, parents should think carefully about where their children attend college. In addition, parents may want to avoid prepaid college programs and allocate funds to high-quality primary and secondary education.
The Wall Street Journal – Douglas Belkin
“Tuition increases at U.S. colleges have plateaued after decades of steep growth, but stagnant wages, near-zero inflation and a slight pullback in grants have amplified this year’s relatively modest rise. Published tuition for the 2015-16 academic year rose 2.9% for in-state students at four-year public schools—the same increase as last year. But adjusted for inflation, the gain was 2.7% this year, compared with 0.9% last year, according to a report released Wednesday from the College Board, a New York nonprofit that tracks university costs.”(more)
Education News – Kristin Decarr
“A new paper suggests that although the higher education sector within the UK is more international overall than the equivalent sector in Germany, Germany continues to move forward while the UK is regressing. The paper, “Keeping up with the Germans?: A comparison of student funding, internationalisation and research in UK and German universities,” looks into the differences between how the two countries handle these issues within the higher education sector…One of the largest differences between the two systems has to do with how international students pay tuition. Germany offers free tuition for all students who attend school in the country.”(more)
The Huffington Post – Tyler Kingkade
“Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (D) signed into law Friday a bill that would allow students to go to community college for free immediately after they graduate high school. The legislation sets aside $10 million over the next year to begin an “Oregon Promise” program. Eligible students will need to enroll within six months of graduating high school, according to the Oregonian, and have at least a 2.5 GPA…Up to 6,000 students could benefit in the first year of the program, a fact sheet on the bill notes, and it is meant to “offset any remaining tuition after deducting any state/federal grants.””(more)