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Looking at the Cost of Publishing Monographs

When Peter Berkerey was named executive director of the American Association of University Presses (AAUP), he undertook a listening tour of the membership. From this experience, he commented that he was struck most by the diversity of the membership and how that made it difficult to establish common programs for the organization. That diversity among university presses is clearly illustrated in The Cost of Publishing Monographs: Toward a Transparent Methodology, a report just concluded by Nancy Maron, Christine Mulhern, Daniel Rossman, and Kimberly Schmelzinger. With planning grant support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Ithaka S+R project team began…


Creating Opportunity in the Tech Industry Pipeline

The lack of diversity in the tech industry has been well documented by the media. Some of the roots of this problem lie in the companies themselves: there’s broad consensus (see here, here, and here) that tech company culture, and perhaps unconscious bias towards underrepresented groups, contribute to low numbers of women, black, and Hispanic employees hired and retained in tech. Some see the lack of diversity as a “pipeline” problem, arguing that the K-12 and post-secondary education system produces too few women and black and Hispanic students with the requisite computer science skills needed to compete for industry jobs.…


Starting from Scratch: Lessons from Guttman Community College

A growing number of America’s community colleges are redesigning their curricula, advising services, faculty development programs, and relationships with four-year institutions in order to help more students succeed. In most cases, reforms take place within existing operating structures, as gradual processes of cultural and institutional change. In contrast to institutions that reorganize existing operations around student success, Stella and Charles Guttman Community College, the newest of the City University of New York’s seven community colleges, started with a relatively blank slate. Guttman welcomed its first cohort in August 2012 and currently serves 824 students, with a goal of enrolling 5,000…


To Measure or Not to Measure: Which Student Outcomes Should Make the Cut?

Few would question whether colleges and universities should have administrative systems in place for measuring learning and course outcomes for all students, in ways that can be quantified and used to help institutions meet their goals. But not all outcomes are created equal, and deciding which outcomes schools should systematically measure for all students can be difficult and controversial. When thinking about colleges engaging in systematic quantitative measurement of student outcomes, three core questions come to mind: (1) Is promoting this outcome a reasonable and widely held goal for higher education or a given institution? (2) Is actual measurement of…


Leadership for Academic Libraries

Developing leaders for academic libraries is an urgent need, especially at a moment when roles and responsibilities of these organizations are in such flux. One of the longest-running and successful programs, the UCLA Senior Fellows program, seemed to be at risk, only because it is totally dependent upon the extraordinary efforts of a single individual. After extensive discussions with Beverly Lynch, UCLA Professor and head of Senior Fellows, Ithaka S+R commissioned former Senior Fellows participant, Karen Calhoun, to carry out a study of the program, with help from an advisory council. The group was charged with making recommendations for a…