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Defining Higher Education's Value: The Key Podcast

May 14, 2021

What's the value of a postsecondary credential? And do colleges and their academic programs provide a good return on investment to students?

This week's episode of The Key, Inside Higher Ed's news and analysis podcast, addresses those questions by exploring the release of a new report from the Postsecondary Value Commission, a high-powered panel of policy makers, college leaders, researchers and others. The report proposes a new way of judging whether colleges and programs are providing a good return on investment to their students -- with a particular focus on whether they’re ensuring equity.

The panel's work is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which also sponsored this episode of The Key.

The episode features discussions with Margaret Spellings, secretary of education under President George W. Bush and former president of the University of North Carolina system; José Luis Cruz, provost at the City University of New York system and incoming president of Northern Arizona University; and Tamara Hiler, director of education at the think tank Third Way. Click here to listen to the podcast.

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Doug Lederman

Doug Lederman is editor and co-founder of Inside Higher Ed. He helps lead the news organization's editorial operations, overseeing news content, opinion pieces, career advice, blogs and other features. Doug speaks widely about higher education, including on C-Span and National Public Radio and at meetings and on campuses around the country, and his work has appeared in The New York Times and USA Today, among other publications. Doug was managing editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education from 1999 to 2003. Before that, Doug had worked at The Chronicle since 1986 in a variety of roles, first as an athletics reporter and editor. He has won three National Awards for Education Reporting from the Education Writers Association, including one in 2009 for a series of Inside Higher Ed articles he co-wrote on college rankings. He began his career as a news clerk at The New York Times. He grew up in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and graduated in 1984 from Princeton University. Doug lives with his wife, Kate Scharff, in Bethesda, Md.

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