Behind the News

And rankings for all: Questioning national college rating framework

Obama administration's system based on access, affordability and outcome

College ranking systems are typically viewed as unreliable metrics, often accused of practicing favoritism based on questionable criteria that varies by publisher.

In an attempt to provide an unbiased and informed resource for prospective students and their families, the Obama administration has formulated its own version of a college ranking system.

New wave of students wants to design own college plans

Two-thirds of Gen Z-aged respondents said they want to learn about entrepreneurship in college

With a design to do things their own way, Generation Z, or people ages 16 to 19, could change higher ed.

Campus child care declines at community colleges

Being a student parent is associated with unmet financial need, low levels of completion and heavy debt

The number of college students with dependent children has been growing, with 4.8 million U.S. undergrads raising children.

Yet, campus-based child care has been declining, according to a new analysis of 2013 U.S. Department of Education data by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

Obama proposes free community college tuition

Plan could cost $60 billion over 10 years

President Barack Obama is not acting like someone whose party suffered heavy defeats in the recent midterm election. Last month he previewed America’s College Promise, an ambitious plan that could help his earlier goal of increasing the number of college graduates to become a reality.

“Put simply, I’d like to see the first two years of community college be free for everyone who is willing to work for it,” Obama said in making the announcement. “It is something we can accomplish and it’s something that will train our workforce so we can compete with anyone in the word.”

Student debt declines for third straight year

With students having borrowed $106 billion, total debt for 2013-14 is down by $8.7 billion

Might the cliche of the forever-indebted college student someday become a fable?

According to a new College Board report, total college student debt for 2013-14 is down by $8.7 billion from the previous school year, with students having borrowed $106 billion. This is the third consecutive year American student borrowing has decreased.

Measuring alumni well-being and engagement

Ohio State, Arizona State, Creighton (Neb.), Bentley (Mass.), George Mason (Va.) and Purdue (Ind.) universities are among the first that have hired Gallup to survey their alumni to gather data on their graduates’ well-being and workplace engagement.

Conference keynoters selected for UBTech 2015

University presidents Laurie Leshin and Donald Farish to speak along with Purdue CIO Gerry McCartney

Three exciting keynote speakers have been locked in for UBTech 2015, University Business’s annual technology and leadership conference, being held June 15 to 17 in Orlando.

Do teacher prep programs lack rigor?

Finding of grade inflation criticized by teacher educators

A National Council on Teacher Quality report citing a lack of rigor and grade inflation in teacher preparation courses is being disputed by the organization that represents college and university education programs.

Colleges drop criminal queries from admissions apps

Three New York schools have eliminated or altered questions pertaining to applicants’ criminal histories

In an era where many campus security efforts are being amplified, some schools are relaxing certain policies around prospective students’ criminal backgrounds.

Admissions with a focus on locus

Indiana college adds personality quiz to admissions process

Beginning in 2016, when prospective students to the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (Ind.) submit their SAT scores and transcripts, they’ll be asked to take a personality quiz to help the school determine who has the right stuff to succeed.

“I’ve always felt there’s something missing in admissions, something that we can do better,” says Jim Goecker, vice president of enrollment management and strategic communication.

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