Everyone complains about not getting reliable data on student success, but no one does anything about it. Until now, write Mary Ellen Petrisko and John Etchemendy.
Accreditation and Student Learning
The Education Department has created new data reports on the performance of accrediting agencies, using measures such as graduation and loan repayment rates at colleges the agencies oversee.
The student learning outcomes accreditors require too often reduce learning to inane, meaningless blurbs, writes Robert Shireman, which prevent the sort of quality assurance that puts student work at the center.
Most colleges put student work at the center of how they measure academic quality, writes Peter Ewell, who argues that abandoning student learning outcomes would be a serious mistake.
As boot camps, online courses and other nontraditional academic offerings expand, several organizations angle to play an accreditor-like role in the growing space.
In a lawsuit that could chart new ground, the consumer bureau is battling in court for information about how an accreditor approved some of the most controversial for-profit colleges.
Businesses should have a stronger voice in accreditation, while also developing their own alternative to the process, say the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and USA Funds.
Association leader says accreditors could discourage politicians' focus on economic-driven measure of quality if they jointly embraced indicators of student learning.
Skills Fund wants to be both a private lender and new form of accreditor for the rapidly expanding boot camp sector, with a heavy focus on students' return on investment.
Nation's largest accreditor has decided that many of those who lead dual enrollment classes aren't qualified to do so, leaving schools and colleges fearing the loss of a program they view as a success.