Profit Or Progress?

Career College Central summary:

  • A national group of faculty leaders this week launched the first of three reports that will shine a critical spotlight at the influence of private funds on higher education. The effort is intended to broaden the conversation about the companies fueling the rate of change of technology in higher education
  • In its first report, titled “The ‘Promises’ of Online Higher Education: Profits,” the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education tracks federal policy changes through the 1990s and 2000s — in particular the allocation of financial aid for for-profit institutions — that have enabled online education providers and their private-sector backers to flourish. The remaining two releases, planned for the next two weeks, will look at affordability and access, respectively, before the month culminates with Campus Equity Week, which focuses on issues related to contingent faculty, student loan debt and wages.
  • The report urges readers to question the influx of private funds into the ed-tech industry — investments that topped $1 billion in 2012, according to one consultant group’s estimate. In order to evaluate how technology is helping improve student outcomes, the public needs to “follow the money,” a phrase the report frequently invokes.

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