Higher Education Quick Takes

Quick Takes

August 13, 2014

The American Bar Association's governing council has approved changes in the ABA rules for accrediting law schools, The National Law Journal reported. The changes will require that law school have students gain experience in clinics or other real world settings, and will shift an emphasis from the qualifications of entering students to measures of learning and placement rates. The ABA and law schools have been criticized for not doing enough in the past about law schools that enroll students who may have little chance at employment in jobs sufficient to repay their loans.

 

August 13, 2014

Inside Higher Ed is today releasing a free compilation of articles -- in print-on-demand format -- about strategies for recruiting, retaining and graduating nontraditional students. The articles involve a wide range of institutions, the use of technology and different curricular approaches.

This booklet is part of a series of such compilations that Inside Higher Ed is publishing on a range of topics.

On Thursday, September 11 at 1 p.m. Eastern, Inside Higher Ed editors Scott Jaschik and Doug Lederman will conduct a free webinar to talk about the issues raised in the booklet's articles. To register for the webinar, please click here.

August 13, 2014

As the Associated Press put it, new law school graduates "with mountains of debt were perhaps not the best crowd to tick off." In many states in July, those taking bar exams couldn't submit them due to technical problems at ExamSoft, the company that manages the process. Now, several of those people have filed suits and they are seeking class action status, the Associated Press reported. Their suits claim that ExamSoft should have identified (and fixed) the problems prior to the night that so many people were traumatized by being unable to submit their work. ExamSoft has apologized and noted that state bar associations extended deadlines. A statement from the company said: "Unfortunately upgrades, made in an attempt to improve the exam taker experience, played a role in the post-exam processing delay that some bar exam takers experienced."

 

August 13, 2014

After being told that she would have a course for the fall at the Corcoran College of Art + Design, Jayme McLellan found that her adjunct position disappeared. Officially the course was canceled. But as The Los Angeles Times noted, the college had recently confirmed plans for her to offer the course. And as the article explained, many are furious about this development because McLellan has been a leader of opposition to a current plan to merge the college into George Washington University.

August 13, 2014

Amid criticism from conservative corners that its new Advanced Placement U.S. history framework downplayed positive concepts, the College Board this week released a practice exam for the course and said it would clarify controversial elements, Education Week reported. In an open letter, David Coleman, College Board president, said he hoped the unprecedented move of releasing an exam to non-certified A.P. teachers would quell concerns that framework neglected or misrepresented important parts of American history.

"People who are worried that AP U.S. history students will not need to study our nation's founders need only take one look at this exam to see that our founders are resonant throughout," Coleman said, noting that the framework was just that, and that local teachers could add to it as they saw fit. He also said that the board soon would released a "clarified" version of the course outline.

Last week, the Republican National Committee approved a resolution saying that the framework ignored or misrepresented such topics as the motivations of early American settlers and the U.S. role in World War II, along with important historical figures, including Albert Einstein and Rosa Parks. Supporters of the resolution garnered more than a 1,000 signatures asking the College Board to delay enacting the framework, referred to as "APUSH," by one year.

August 13, 2014

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education on Tuesday released the latest estimates from fund-raisers at educational institutions about growth rates for the last year and the one about the start. The fund-raisers believe that donations to their institutions grew by 5.4 percent, on average, during the academic year that ended June 30. And they predict identical growth for the coming academic year.

August 13, 2014

In today's Academic Minute, Pamela Keel, a Florida State University psychologist, discusses her research on the association between Facebook and a higher propensity for developing an eating disorder. Learn more about the Academic Minute here.
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August 12, 2014

The board of West Shore Community College, in Michigan, placed President Charles Dillon on paid leave Monday night, following his drunk driving arrest last week, The Mason County Press reported. The board also required Dillon to enter a residential alcohol treatment program and to return the car owned by the college. Dillon was arrested after police received reports of a drunk driver. He spent a night in jail before being released on bond. Dillon spoke briefly at the meeting, saying: “I take full responsibility for my behavior. I own it. I am filled with regret. I let down the college, the board, my colleagues and friends who I have worked so hard to build the reputation of this college and most of all, I let down my family. I am so sorry and I ask for your forgiveness.”

August 12, 2014

St. Augustine's University, a historically black college in North Carolina, has announced that 70 adjuncts will not be rehired for the coming academic year, The News and Observer of Raleigh reported. The university has been struggling financially. The institution will furlough all employees for a week in December.

August 12, 2014

An investigative article in The Indianapolis Star examines the sales and operating practices of The College Network, which provides online learning materials and tests to help students prepare for equivalency exams to earn college credit. The newspaper's investigation finds scores of consumer complaints against the company, with adult students complaining of high-pressure sales tactics that resulted in significant debt, as well as the company's ties to a loan collection agency. A spokesman for the company challenged some of the newspaper's findings in written answers to a reporter's questions.

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