Of Tires and College Students

Just as the No Child Left Behind Act mandates strict accountability of elementary and secondary schools, all colleges should be required to administer the value-added test I propose to all entering freshmen and to students about to graduate, and to report the mean value added, broken out by precollege SAT scores, race, and gender. That would strongly encourage institutions to improve their undergraduate education and to admit only students likely to derive enough benefit to justify the time, tuition, and opportunity costs. Societal bonus: Employers could request that job applicants submit the test results, leading to more-valid hiring decisions.

America’s Most Overrated Product: the Bachelor’s Degree – Chronicle.com

Hmm…while I agree with author Marty Nemko that college is overrated our reasons are different.  He thinks colleges need to be more like tire companies and be held accountable regarding their products. Tires — college grads, what’s the dif?  I, on the other hand, think that we can gain deep knowledge and understanding in many venues, the college classroom being just one of them.

1 Comment

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One response to “Of Tires and College Students

  1. hope

    The author’s apparent faith in the positive effect of NCLB, really told me all I needed to know, but I read the article anyway. He seems to advocate an extension of the Nanny state–let’s stop people from buying things that are bad for them, including expensive college educations.

    In a pipe-dream sort of way, I too, would like to see the statistics about colleges that he asks for, but shouldn’t we then demand the same answers about all products? Tell me, Mr. Car Salesman, exactly how many people who buy these red mustangs actually get a hot date as a direct result?


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