Why Does a College Degree Cost So Much?

Educational Innovation Weekly Review for Ed Leaders
Curated by Tecnológico de Monterrey's Observatory of Educational Innovation
June 23, 2015
Contact us observatorio@itesm.mx
Why Does a College Degree Cost So Much?
  • In February 1970, Harvard University broke the bad news to students and their parents: Tuition was going up. Their reluctant consensus raised the annual cost of attending the prestigious school in the fall of 1971 by $200—to $2,600. It was the first time since 1949 that the school had boosted tuition two years in a row.
  • More than forty years later, tuition at American colleges and universities continues to surge ahead. This fall, Harvard's annual tuition and fees (not including room and board) will set you back $45,278, more than 17 times the 1971-72 cost. 
  • With the total level of student debt outstanding at more than $1.2 trillion, parents, students and researchers are now asking: how is this sustainable? And why does college cost so much?
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/CollegeCostsHigh

Keywords: higher education, universities, college debt
Princeton and Other Elite Colleges Critical of Accreditation Process
The Wall Street Journal
  • Princeton University is one of the most prestigious universities in the world. The college’s rejection rate of undergraduate applicants is among the highest in the country, and about 97% of its students graduate. 
  • But the accreditor that Princeton needs on its side so students can continue getting access to federal loans and grants told college officials in 2009 to improve documentation of how much students were learning.
  • Top colleges like Princeton spend years, millions of dollars and thousands of hours preparing for their review to the point that it can “weaken the quality of the institution as oppose to strengthen it.” At Cornell University, preparation for an accreditation review included the part-time labor of 75 people working 2½ years, according to the school.
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/AccredProcess

Keywords: higher education, universities, accreditation
A Vision For Teacher Training At MIT: West Point Meets Bell Labs
  • For decades, Arthur Levine has tried to imagine a new kind of institution for training teachers. He envisions a combination West Point and Bell Labs, where researchers could study alongside future educators, learning what works and what's effective in the classroom. That idea is now set to become a reality.
  • Levine and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation announced a $30 million partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with the goal of creating a better model for teacher training. 
  • "Instead of focusing on courses and credits students need to take, we're going to focus on the skills and knowledge they need to have to enter the classroom," says Arthur Levine, the president of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/WoodrowWilsonF

Keywords: higher education, teacher training, professional development, Arthur Levine
University of Washington and Chinese University Unite to Form Technology Institute
The New York Times
  • Seattle’s top academic and business leaders unveiled a plan to create a new institute of learning, with the goal of strengthening the educational foundation of the region’s high-tech economy. The institute, the Global Innovation Exchange, is a partnership between the University of Washington and Tsinghua University.
  • It will open in fall 2016 with a master’s degree program in technology innovation. “This will be the first time a Chinese university has a physical spot in the U.S.,” said Dr. Ana Mari Cauce, interim president of the University of Washington. “That’s a big deal.”
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/UWUTsinghua

Keywords: technology, research, partnerships
When It Comes to Getting a Job, Americans Believe Skills Trump College
The Atlantic
  • Earn a college degree, and you’ll set yourself up for life: a stable job, salary, and mortgage. That was the old adage for generation after generation, following World War II. Now, according to a new poll, just 55 percent of the young people believes that a four-year degree is “very important” for a good career.
  • Today, understanding computer technology, working well with different types of people, keeping your skills current, and having good family connections trump the importance of college—at least, when it comes to people’s notions of what it takes to succeed in the modern workplace. 
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/ValuableSkills

Keywords: education, skills, economy
Connecting Talent With Opportunity in the Digital Age
McKinsey Global Institute
  • Labor markets around the world haven’t kept pace with rapid shifts in the global economy, and their inefficiencies have taken a heavy toll. Millions of people cannot find work. Online talent platforms can ease a number of labor-market dysfunctions by more effectively connecting individuals with work opportunities.
  • By 2025, these platforms could add $2.7 trillion to global GDP. In our new McKinsey Global Institute report, A labor market that works: Connecting talent with opportunity in the digital age, we examine the current state of employment and the impact these digital platforms could have.
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/ConnectngTalent

Keywords: labor market, economy, online education, online talent platforms, report
Why Aren’t Today’s Billionaires Investing in Higher Education Innovation?
  • Last month, John Paulson paid $400 million to rename the Harvard Engineering School. The gift represents a disappointing reality: rather than build the next generation of universities, today’s billionaires are content to bolster a university system that isn’t keeping pace with the demands of our economy or fulfilling its democratic promise. 
  • In 1867, Johns Hopkins donated $7 million to an institution that later bore his name—the largest philanthropic bequest in U.S. history. Hopkins disrupted higher education by combining teaching and research in one institution, something truly radical at the time. Why have America’s wealthiest shied away from investments that might compete with our education establishment?
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/HEinnovation

Keywords: higher education, innovation, donations, opinion
Business Schools Adapt to Changing Times
Financial Times
  • The effects of the 2008 financial crisis continue to reverberate around the world’s financial centres. In a variety of ways, financial training is moving on from the crisis. Several business schools report sharp rises in the number of applicants as job opportunities increase. 
  • Financial training has had to adapt to this world, not least by greater emphasis on risk management and updating its regulations curriculum in line with rule changes. Courses on ethics have gained a new degree of importance.
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/BSchoolsAdapt

Keywords: business schools, financial training, economy
Sweet Briar Survives
Inside Higher Ed
  • Sweet Briar College lives on. In a deal announced Saturday evening by Virginia's attorney general, the college's current leaders agreed to relinquish control to a new president and a largely new board. Saving Sweet Briar, an organization of alumnae who have fought the planned closure of the college, has agreed to raise $12.5 million to continue operating the college in the 2015-16 academic year.
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/SweetBriarSaved

Keywords: higher education, universities and colleges
Google Ventures Invests in Oxford University Venture Fund
The Wall Street Journal
  • Google Ventures’ European branch has invested in Oxford Sciences Innovation PLC, a company that funds spinoffs from Oxford University’s tech and science departments. Google Ventures is Google’s fund for early-stage tech investments. The investment in OSI is Google Ventures’ second in Europe since it was set up in July 2014. 
Visit Website: http://bit.ly/GoogleVenturesOxford

Keywords: technology, Google, research, science, Oxford
Educational Innovation Weekly Review is curated by Tecnológico de Monterrey's  Observatory of Educational Innovation. With the highlights of the week on innovation, technology and education. If you require more information about a specific note, please email us: observatorio@itesm.mx. TECNOLÓGICO DE MONTERREY, 2015.

Observatory of Educational Innovation

Tecnológico de Monterrey's Observatory of Educational Innovation: We identify and analyze the educational innovation trends that are shaping the future of learning and education. 

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