With the rise in tuition at universities and the relatively limited government funding of the education is proposing new challenging on students. The need for new approaches and changes in higher education is becoming more and more urgent.
The evaluation of the choice to proceed with higher education or not depend primarily on the estimated wage premiums, will it be worth it to invest in education with a higher potential wage in the future? Tuition is now 13 times higher than what they were 40 years ago, and government reduced education funding significantly after the recession in 2008 (16% less per student from 208 to 2018). However, the average wage can increase 60 to 75% more than what is earned by individuals with no education. Due to the reduced funding, universities are responding in different manner. Purdue, for example, lessened the intake of instate students, and increased the intake of out of state and international students since these students pay higher tuition with less need for financial aid.
In addition to the reduced funding, there is the concern that higher education might not necessarily provide students with the needed skills for the jobs outside. Some university programs seems much simpler or outdated than real world problems. This problem seem to be worsening with the increase in automation and artificial intelligence worldwide, forcing universities to come up with new solutions to overcome the challenges faced by students in higher education.
Some of the solutions/ innovations include online teaching as an accepted option to attain a degree; the increase in competency-based education (CBE) which are less expensive and more career-orientated; income share agreements that help students in paying their debts from their salaries and allow them a grace period until they find a job; in additions to other solutions.
** This blog on based on the Education Plus development article found here.
7 thoughts on “The need for innovation in Higher Education Post”
I think a lot of the point you bought up made a lot of sense. The increased tuition and reduced government funding is definitely an issue nowadays and it is quite hard to find a solution to this problem. I think online teaching is definitely one of the ways in which we can tackle this problem. I also think however that online teaching also brings up its own sets of limitations. In my opinion, I know that I would rather attend university physically and being present in classes because I seem to get a lot more out of it than via an online lecture. It is hard to come up with one solution which will work for every problem.
You’ve made some very good points; thank you. I feel the investment into education shouldn’t be a problem primarily for the student and their guardian; the government has a responsibility too. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be the case.
Reem, thank you for sharing your perspective on such a challenging issue and possible solution with online classes. However, I worry that if people continue to choose online classes, that they too will be able to increase their rates and join on board the increases in college tuition fees every year. Virginia Tech does seem to be making some strides toward combatting this problem, as my younger brother recently got accepted and received a flyer in the mail that provides no increase in fees over the course of his four years as long as the family makes less than $100,000 per year. I think increasing scholarships and grants for people who can’t afford it would really help solve this problem and hopefully encourage everyone to have that wonderful, enriching freshmen year experience!
Thanks, Reem for sharing these interesting findings. I also feel the same way, e.g. we are not interested to invest the same portion (or even close) towards education like we are interested to invest in warfare or defense or some other sectors. That’s why I agree we need innovation in Higher education.
I agree that there needs to be innovation in higher education as a result of the high tuition, student debit, and funding crises. Lowering costs via online instruction is one option, however increasing funding from the federal government is another. You also bring up a point on the low utility for a degree in higher ed for some individuals. If there is more federal funding, tax payers need to get what they pay for, making government funding, and the issue of high tuition, intertwined with the value of an individual’s degree to society. I agree future innovation will have to tackle the issue of ensuring the education is valuable.
I’ve met a number of undergrads who were interested in going into grad school, but the cost was too prohibitive compared to what they could be making out of undergrad. If online teaching is going to be a solution to this problem, I think there need to be a lot of improvements to online courses. Teaching an online only course provides different challenges to an in person course. I feel like a good online class requires the professor to be tech savvy and from my experience many are not.
You made some really excellent points here! I especially like the stats you brought in that emphasize the capitalism that has exponentially increased over the decades, as well as the mannerisms and intentions of universities shifting to target those who can bring in more financial capital, than necessarily looking to students in-state as a means of, potentially, facilitating a cycle of systemic change that could see economic improvement. Thank you for your post!