“The most expensive universities have the least qualified instructors”
In this excellent article from The Daily Caller Andrew Kerr explores why the cost of college is “too damn high.”
A key part is that universities are too focused on research and the pursuit of research grants. Basically students, primarily undergraduate students, “suffer” because of this focus in 2 ways. First because of the increased tuition costs used to fund post-grad research efforts, and second because professors at research universities often give undergraduate students short shrift. (And are encouraged to.)
Kerr misses a fundamental point though in the “cost of higher education debate” however. And that is the easy availability of aid.
It is all too easy for young people to take on massive piles of debt in pursuit of a degree. Everyone knows this. But the reason for the piles of debt is because the student loan system has inflated the cost of college. Costs go up with the easy money infused into the system. Students then must go deeper in debt to keep up with the rising costs.
I keep hoping this situation will go off the rails before my oldest is ready for college but right now the scheme looks intact – unfortunately.
Kerr seems to argue that it pays to attend a college focused on undergraduate education rather than attend a giant university where costs are higher and where the professors don’t know or really care about you. For some people we agree.
I recommend Mary Washington, my alma mater. It is technically a university now but I believe the focus is still on undergraduate instruction. It’s been infected by the PC bug like most colleges/universities but it is an excellent choice, particularly if one has to pay for the bulk of one’s education like I did. Plus I knew my professors. I even got one on nationwide TV once.
(From The Daily Caller)
Universities that offer less faculty compensation, perform less research and have lower tuition rates are more likely to have engaged and effective professors, according to a Daily Caller News Foundation analysis…
…A 2011 Cato Institute study suggested that separating research from the cost of instruction would reveal the true cost of providing an undergraduate education is roughly $8,000 per student.
So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the least expensive universities, which conduct very little research ($1,283 per student), spend an average of $8,236 per student on instruction.
But surely the quality of instruction delivered by the most expensive universities is better than the most affordable universities?
The answer, shockingly, is no.