Blog

The American Talent Initiative’s Fall 2017 Data Working Group Meeting

In early October, the American Talent Initiative hosted main points of contact from member institutions in Washington, DC, for a Strategic Support Meeting, sharing research and connecting members around promising strategies for enhancing access and success for lower-income students. Later in the month, the American Talent Initiative held another convening, also in Washington DC, for the institutional research contacts of ATI member institutions. The meeting, run by Ithaka S+R and…

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How Research Can Fuel Action to Address Food and Housing Insecurity on American College Campuses

Editor’s note: We asked Sara Goldrick-Rab, a panelist for our Higher Ed Insights Survey, to contribute this blog post based on her open-ended comments on the 2017 survey. It’s been nearly a decade since my team first started studying food and housing insecurity among college students.  To be honest, it wasn’t part of the plan.  We were in the midst of a study on the impacts of a private financial…

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How Policymakers Can Help Institutions Support Financially Insecure Students

Editor’s note: We asked Rachel Dykstra Boon, a panelist for our Higher Ed Insights Survey, to contribute this blog post based on her open-ended comments on the 2017 survey. Ask any teacher (pre-school through graduate school) for an example of a student with food, housing or financial struggles affecting the learning experience and heart-breaking stories will follow. Quantitative and qualitative research over the past several years has pointed to the growth…

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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…

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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…

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Publication

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 …


Event

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…


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Open Educational Resources
Sharing Lessons Learned from K-12 Education

Open educational resources (OERs), which are licensed as freely available for people to use and repurpose, have become a driving force as the education sector looks to reduce costs. OERs are associated with numerous benefits for students, including savings of an average of $128 per course, higher course grades, and greater likelihood of course completion. As a recent Ithaka S+R case study highlighted, the University of Maryland, University College (UMUC)…

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Alternative Postsecondary Pathways

Millions of Americans receive postsecondary training through programs that don’t lead to an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. What do these programs offer?  Who enrolls in them?  How do the students who complete these programs fare? These are some of the questions Jessie Brown and I sought to answer when we embarked on a research project for the Commission on the Future of Undergraduate Education at the American Academy of Arts and…

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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…

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