The Importance of College Advisors for Academic Success

When planning their college years, students want reliable advisors who can help them pick the right major and classes. As most students are not on campus during COVID-19, high-quality early advising may determine whether they will graduate on time. Even before the pandemic, graduation rates across higher ed outside the most prestigious schools were a … Continue reading “The Importance of College Advisors for Academic Success”


True Learning Starts With Real Mentorship

There’s a chasm between the purpose of a liberal arts education and how many colleges and universities actually operate. Throughout academia, excessive value is placed on efficiency, research publications, and prestige—things that are, at best, ancillary to a liberal education’s central purpose of growing in wisdom and pursuing truth. Consequently, instead of focusing on nurturing … Continue reading “True Learning Starts With Real Mentorship”


For Teacher Training, Drop Critical Theory and Add Character

With the pandemic, more parents are discovering what their children are being taught in public schools—from explicit how-tos in sex-ed class to narratives of power that divide everyone into oppressors and oppressed. Yearning for a richer emphasis on cultural literacy, character, and civil discourse, parents are turning to alternative curricula, such as Core Knowledge and … Continue reading “For Teacher Training, Drop Critical Theory and Add Character”


Did You Know? Ed Dept. Punts on Accreditation Rules for Online Classes

Accreditation agencies have the responsibility of judging whether colleges are offering students a quality education. Since COVID-19, however, their biggest changes have been to dismiss concerns about short-changing students. This change can be seen most clearly with online classes. Ordinarily, accreditation standards would ensure educational quality, and schools that cut corners would risk penalties and … Continue reading “Did You Know? Ed Dept. Punts on Accreditation Rules for Online Classes”


Religion on Campus: A Marketable Skill, or a Diversity & Inclusion Fight?

Across higher education, campuses have changed how they deal with religion. It used to be seen as something at odds with academic freedom and science. Now, however, some campus administrators and advocates want students to learn more about religion, and to see policy changes on the institutional level. One argument is for colleges to teach … Continue reading “Religion on Campus: A Marketable Skill, or a Diversity & Inclusion Fight?”


Saving a Struggling College Starts with the Board

Before the COVID-19 pandemic walloped our colleges and universities, higher education had been facing threats to existing business models for years. A great deal has been written the past few years predicting the demise of large numbers of U.S. colleges and universities. Many higher education institutions are indeed threatened. But their demise may not be … Continue reading “Saving a Struggling College Starts with the Board”


America Needs a GED Equivalent for a College Degree

As higher education undergoes dramatic changes thanks to the coronavirus, reformers should aim higher than expanding online education. Now is a propitious time to end the dominance of accreditation agencies in higher ed and create a GED-like equivalency exam for a college degree. Many students want a traditional college life: living on campus for four … Continue reading “America Needs a GED Equivalent for a College Degree”


College Reform: Build Lifeboats to Escape the Sinking Ship

In their recent Martin Center policy brief, Joy Pullmann and Sumantra Maitra get much right about the activist professor problem in academia. These professors are dominating the profession in a way I wouldn’t have thought possible three or four years ago. Their control has led to an ideological monoculture, which suppresses freedom of thought and … Continue reading “College Reform: Build Lifeboats to Escape the Sinking Ship”


If We Jettison Standardized Testing, What’s Its Replacement?

The COVID-19 pandemic probably won’t kill the SAT, but will no doubt leave it in a badly weakened condition. Both the SAT (and its close competitor, the ACT) have had to cancel administration of their tests for the last few months and, according to this Washington Post story, universities have decided that they will make … Continue reading “If We Jettison Standardized Testing, What’s Its Replacement?”


Why Do American Universities Lead the World in Scientific Research?

Miguel Urquiola is professor and chair of the department of economics at Columbia University. His special field is education and his book Markets, Minds, and Money: Why America Leads the World in University Research is about American higher education—its history, its relationship to higher education in Europe, and the trajectory it has followed from the … Continue reading “Why Do American Universities Lead the World in Scientific Research?”