Thursday, November 03, 2005

National Summit on cutting college costs makes suggestions

I have linked to this organization and website before, but here is a new report about a recent meeting.

There, several adminstrators and public figures to address the question of how to control college costs and discussed several issues, the one highlighted by the Inside Higher ed story is remedial service for unqualified students. They also mention making faculty teach more, generating more non-tuition revenue, etc.

It is an interesting emphasis. We clearly have plenty of help for students who are not fully prepared for college, but it is hard to imagine that it is a very large share of the overall budget.

Inside Higher Ed :: High Schools and High College Costs


Anonymous said...

We have been down the remedial reduction route before. One problem we face is that each campus competes for students, so we talk tough, but let in lots of kids with weak backgrounds. We will continue to do this, especially now that UWO has fallen behind its peers in attacting first year students.

The best action the UW System ever took was to require three years of high school-level math at ALL UW campuses, that way no campus could undercut the others. If math really is the problem, it may be time to require four years rather than three. But trust me, if you think things are bad now, you should have been teaching when two years of math was enough to get admitted.

Lake Winneblogo said...

There is a huge tension in higher education between access and quality. Unfortunately, the more high school students that find their way to college, the lower the bar must be set for their admittance.

Ours is a strange profession, in that we are constantly asked to lower our standards. We can't fail out too many students as individuals or as an institution without jeopardizing our positions. Retention, not education, has become one of our highest values.

If I were bolder, I would fail at least a 1/3 of my survey classes. Can you imagine the trouble I would bring upon myself if I started do to this? Thus, I rationalize my own low standards for piece of mind and a place in a profession that I dearly love.