The American Council of Trustees and Alumni, a nonprofit advocate for college/university accountability has issued a critical report on the efficacy of college or university degrees in the United States. The report concluded:
- Examples of weaknesses include that graduates do not know: 1) the US congressional term length, 2) what the Emancipation Proclamation was, 2) or the lead Revolutionary War general at Yorktown.
- Few colleges today mandate core subject courses such as U.S. government, history or economics. (This may help explain the incompetence of the current President.)
- Only 18% of colleges require an American history course to graduate with only 13% requiring a foreign language and a mere 3% one in economics. (It is likely that these Progressive educators fear that an economics education would out the incompetent fiscal management of our government.)
- Whittier College, a liberal arts institution in Southern California was graded an F because it required only one core course; composition. This school had no requirement for courses in literature, language, government, history, economics, math or science. Incredible! Two other of the 98 schools that received F’s were Wesleyan University, Connecticut and Brown University, Rhode Island.
- Only 23 schools received grades of A’s from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni with one being Christopher Newport University in Virginia that required students to take core courses including literature, language, government, history, economics, math or science.
A recent book titled “Academically Adrift” followed a group of freshman who graduated between 2009 in 2010. It concluded that the followed students studied only an average of five hours per week. In addition, for 2013 30% of the group earned less than $30,000 annually in full-time jobs. While it is hard to justify a college degree based on results, these results are understandable given the low quality of the offered education.
There is a growing chorus questioning the value of a college or university degree. At the same time the cost of the education has skyrocketed faster than the rate of inflation, a direct result of governmental subsidizes for the cost/borrowing for tuition. This broken system should have been repaired long ago, but power of the education industry circumvented repairs. However, as with any free lunch, there are always consequences and changes that intervene and stop the cycle. Two currently attacking the education industry include poor economic conditions and job market, and the Internet that will move much education online causing significant financial damage to bricks and mortar schools.
As competition for students increase with the education industry encountering the new economic realities, schools that supply real educations will survive with feel-good institutions becoming irrelevant.