March 28, 2017
Higher education leaders entered the 2017 session of the Texas Legislature expecting some dark days. Two-and-a-half months in, they're now focused on warding off a perfect storm. In addition to potential state funding cuts, which are being discussed like they're a virtual certainty in the Capitol, schools are staring down efforts to freeze tuition and slash federal funding for higher education. If all three happen, the universities' three biggest sources of money would be reduced or frozen for 2018.
March 23, 2017
In order to reduce disparities and make college more accessible, policymakers and higher education leaders should initiate a national discussion to establish a free and universal K-14 system. That was one of the key arguments made Wednesday at a higher education forum meant to highlight ways to increase postsecondary attainment and give students a better shot at securing one of the growing number of jobs that require education beyond high school.
March 16, 2017
Creating a campus culture of data use can drive institutional initiatives to improve student learning and increase degree completion. That is the latest analysis coming from two higher education organizations this week. The Association of Public & Land-Grant Universities (APLU) and the Institution for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) have released 14 brief case studies that “spotlight the importance of student-level data in the development and implementation of programs and strategies to improve student learning and increase degree completion,” according to the APLU website. Each case study explains how the college, university or system “turned student data into actionable information and tools that improved student decisions and outcomes.”
March 14, 2017
Shari Garmise, the executive director of the Coalition of Urban Serving Universities and vice president of the office of urban initiatives at the Association of Public Land-Grant Universities, said that so far, every single completion grant recipient has stayed in school or graduated. Next up are randomized control trials at several of the universities. Garmise said that for some schools, the study opens a larger issue: Is financial aid just for giving students access to college? Or can it be used to help them complete it? “We have a problem to solve,” she said. “The deeper question is how do we rethink financial aid as part of the total student journey.”