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tag: Accreditation

Past Event
January 30, 2018

What Is the New Normal for Accreditation and What Should It Be?

Martin Kurzweil Speaks at CHEA Annual Conference Plenary Session

On Tuesday, January 30, Martin Kurzweil is speaking at the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) Annual Conference on “What Is the New Normal for Accreditation and What Should It Be?” Barbara Brittingham, president of the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, New England Association of Schools and Colleges is moderating the panel which also includes Ed Klonoski, president of Charter Oak State College. This plenary session will run from 10 – 11:00 am. The CHEA Annual Conference is being…
Blog Post
November 10, 2017

For-Profit Colleges – What Went Wrong?

Mention the phrase “for-profit college” and I can’t help but immediately picture a single parent working two jobs while attending college at night, after the kids are asleep, saddled with debt and no prospects for improving their employment conditions or earnings despite their best efforts. Vivid in my mind are the painful stories of young low-income mothers I interviewed during my graduate studies, whose economic, family, and personal decisions (and opportunities) were often dictated by their (relatively exorbitant) loan repayments…
Blog Post
November 6, 2017

The Tax Status of Colleges: Who Cares?

Across several survey items, the respondents to Ithaka S+R’s Higher Ed Insights Spring 2017 Survey rated Obama administration policies and enforcement actions against for-profit institutions as having a high and positive impact. In my view, policies such as the gainful employment rule and actions such as revoking the accreditation authority of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) for revoking Title IV eligibility for students attending ITT Tech were understandable, on the whole, but had serious shortcomings.
Blog Post
October 31, 2017

In New Survey, Higher Ed Insiders Share Concerns about Impact of Federal Policy Changes under President Trump

In May and June of 2017, we surveyed the Ithaka S+R Higher Ed Insights panel—164 senior leaders and experts at colleges and universities, associations, research groups, and philanthropies—about the state of higher education and the likely impact of recent events and trends. (You can learn more about our Higher Ed Insights Project here.) Today, in “Higher Ed Insights: Results of the Spring 2017 Survey,” Rayane Alamuddin, Daniel Rossman, and I report the findings of that survey. While respondents…
Research Report
October 31, 2017

Higher Ed Insights: Results of the Spring 2017 Survey

In May and June of 2017, we surveyed the Ithaka S+R Higher Ed Insights panel—164 senior leaders and experts at colleges and universities, associations, research groups, and philanthropies—about the state of higher education and the likely impact of recent events and trends. While respondents were generally positive about the state of undergraduate education in the United States, they expressed urgency about the need to improve degree completion rates, the quality of student learning, and affordability for students. Respondents’ reactions to…
Past Event
November 9, 2017

Martin Kurzweil Speaks on Quality Assurance in U.S. Higher Education

At University of Pennsylvania School of Law

On Thursday, November 9, Martin Kurzweil and Wendell Pritchett, Provost and Presidential Professor of Law and Education at the University of Pennsylvania, are speaking on “Quality Assurance in U.S. Higher Education: The Current Landscape and Principles for Reform.” The talk will be held in the Bernard Segal Moot Court Room at Penn Law at noon. From the event website: The U.S. system of higher education continues to be vital to our country, but over the last decade it has come under increasing…
Blog Post
June 8, 2017

How to Assure Quality in Higher Education?

Focus on Innovation, Minimum Standards, and Continuous Improvement

The U.S. quality assurance system—focused mainly on accreditation as a threshold for federal financial aid eligibility—has done a poor job of assuring quality. Barely 60 percent of first-time students complete a bachelor’s degree and 40 percent complete an associate’s degree at the institution where they started. These overall results mask a wide range of outcomes across institutions. As a result, many students, parents, and policymakers question the value of their massive investment in postsecondary education. Can the accreditation process be…
Research Report
June 8, 2017

Quality Assurance in U.S. Higher Education

The Current Landscape and Principles for Reform

The American higher education sector is diverse and creative. In 2014-15, the sector produced over 1 million associate’s degrees, nearly 1.9 million bachelor’s degrees, over 758,000 master’s degrees, and over 178,000 doctoral degrees.[1] The world leader in innovation for decades, the sector continues to produce cutting edge research and contributes mightily to the American economy. Recent estimates concluded that the United States spends a larger percentage of GDP on higher education than any other country.[2] But…
Blog Post
May 13, 2016

How Should Higher Education be Regulated?

The Case for Management-Based Regulation

For much of the 20th Century, the government relied on a command-and-control form of regulation in their oversight of organizations across many sectors. In other words, the government mandated that these regulated entities undertake specific activities and then monitored their compliance. In the late 20th Century, reaction to the burdens and inefficacy of command and control led to a shift in some areas to performance-based regulation. Under this model,  the government determines targets for outcomes and regulated entities choose the…
Blog Post
March 14, 2016

The Problems of Accreditation of For-Profit Institutions

And a Step to Improve It

In my most recent blog post, I compared financial aid data for the 2013-14 academic year with that of previous years. One interesting finding was that the share of Pell enrollments at for-profit institutions has declined by 22 percent since it peaked in 2009-10. As explained in the blog, this decline coincides with the federal government’s efforts to crack down on students’ low-value use of Pell grants, specifically at for-profit institutions. For-profit programs, according to the federal Department of…