Updates from the SOURCE on Community College  
Issues, Trends & Strategies     


Published by
The Roueche Graduate Center, National American University  
in partnership with Lorenzo Associates, Inc.
 VOLUME 5, ISSUE 13 - August 9, 2015
"The virtues of men are of more consequence to society than their abilities; and for this reason,
the heart should be cultivated with more assiduity than the head." - Noah Webster    
In This Issue




Reports & Articles 


08/05/2015: A College System Measures How Low-Paying Degrees Serve the Public Good, by Eric Kelderman, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Administration - While higher-education officials often tout the salary bonus conferred by a bachelor's degree, for instance, many of those same officials worry about over relying on wages as the only way to demonstrate the value of a college education.

07/28/2015: Blackboard Owners Reportedly Seeking $3B Sale, by Roger Riddell, Education Dive - According to a report from Reuters, Blackboard majority owner Providence Equity Partners LLC is considering selling the ed tech company for up to $3 billion, including debt.

07/27/2015: Guest Opinion: Community Colleges Have Key Role in Idaho, Nation's Future, by Kay M. McClenney, Idaho Statesman - the national pattern of educational attainment leading to higher earnings does not appear to hold in Idaho. Data indicate that Idaho's economy relies disproportionately on low-paying industries and that employees in relatively high-wage jobs tend to be less educated and to earn lower wages than their national peers.

07/27/2015: Fact Sheet: Focusing Higher Education on Student Success, U.S. Department of Education - America's students and families need, and the nation's economic strength will depend on, a higher education system that helps all students succeed. That starts with making college more affordable but goes much further - to focus on whether students are actually graduating in a timely way with a meaningful degree that sets them up for future success.

07/23/2015: Some Places Are Already Providing Free Community College. You Just Haven't Heard About It., by Tyler Kingkade, HuffPost, College - Delaware's Student Excellence Equals Degree scholarship program provides free community college in that state. However, because the SEED program is referred to as a scholarship rather than an entitlement, it's received less attention than Tennessee and Oregon's free community college programs, Delaware officials say. In fact, the SEED scholarship is both -- it's guaranteed to any student who meets the requirements.

07/22/2015: State Auditors Find "Minor" Improprieties At Twelve Community Colleges, by Kathleen Megan, Hartford Courant - A state audit of the state's 12 community colleges has revealed a wide range of "minor" improprieties from contracts that weren't properly signed before work began, to a lack of time sheets for part-time lecturers, to the over-payment of an employee at one college.

07/22/2015: The New Frontier for Advanced Placement: Online AP Lessons, for Free, by Nick Anderson, The Washington Post - A new sequence of lessons for high school Advanced Placement courses in calculus, physics and macroeconomics went live on a free Web site founded by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University. The lessons, developed by Davidson College for the site called edX, represent a new step in the evolution of ties between the popular AP college-level program and the "massive open online courses" known as MOOCs.

07/20/2015: Health Care and Higher Ed, by Kellie Woodhouse, Inside Higher Ed - In an era of increasing scrutiny and growing financial difficulty, health care and higher education face many of the same challenges: disruption, rising prices, consumer criticism, decreasing public funds and an increasing need for collaborations and mergers.

07/13/2015: Why We Need to Keep the "Community" in Community Colleges, by Anna Clark, Next City - By assuming a name that has the ring of a traditional four-year school, community colleges are playing into the stereotype that they are less valuable than their counterparts. They give credence to the second-class stigma. "I'm not sure at what point 'community college' was branded a dirty term," a columnist at Lane Community College in Eugene, Oregon, wrote recently in the school paper, "but I've found myself red in the face when someone asked me where I go to school. In a room full of university students."

07/13/2015: Learning a Foreign Language A 'Must' in Europe, Not So In America, by Kat Devlin, PewResearchCenter, FactTank - While the U.S. does not have a national requirement for students to learn a foreign language in school, the typical European pupil must study multiple languages in the classroom before becoming a teen.

07/12/2015: Plan to Allow Community Colleges to Offer 4-year Nursing Degrees Resurfaces, by Lindsay VanHulle, Crain's Detroit Business - Lawmakers in Michigan have renewed an effort to allow community colleges to award bachelor's degrees in nursing - a move that could change the way nursing education is delivered in the state as industry preferences evolve to favor nurses with more advanced training. The state's 28 community colleges support the idea as a natural extension of their mission. But four-year public universities oppose the measure, arguing the change would undermine existing agreements between community colleges and traditional four-year programs.

07/07/2015: Aspen Ideas Fest, 2015, by Jamie Merisotis, Lumina Foundation - Competency-based education articulates what a degree should mean based around the learning rather than the number of earned credits. Lumina President Jamie Merisotis discusses affordability, equity, student debt, and new learning models in the tutorial session "Should College Be Free?" at the Aspen Ideas Festival 2015.

06/29/2015: What's Wrong with Going To a Community College? How Two-year Colleges Can Be Better Than Four-year Universities., by Jeffrey J. Selingo, The Washington Post - It's unfortunate that community colleges suffer from such a negative stereotype because so many people who end up going to a four-year college-and usually end up dropping out-would be much better off starting or even finishing at a two-year college.  

To view our entire Miscellaneous Resources sectionclick here.

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05/14/2015: 2015 Survey of Community College Presidents, by Inside Higher Ed, Slideshare - Community college graduation rates are low, and only one in five first-time students studying full time are able to earn a two-year degree within three years. Here are a few takeaways from Inside Ed's report that underscore the important student success and completion conversation.

04/17/2015: Student Perspectives on Community Colleges: Infographic, by Tami Strang, Cengage Learning, Engaging Minds Resources and Insights - Cengage Learning recently surveyed thousands of college students across the country to help them better understand how students live and learn. Learn what students had to say about their perceptions of, and experience at, community colleges.


To view our entire Statistics-Oriented Resources section, click here.

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Online Education

Reports & Articles


07/27/2015: Linfield College Adds Online Wine Certificates, by Leila Meyer, Campus Technology - Linfield College Online and Continuing Education in Oregon has introduced two new online certificate programs: Wine Marketing and Wine Management.

07/20/2015: Cheating, Student Authentication and Proctoring in Online Programs, by Dennis Berkey and Jay Halfond, New England Board of Higher Education - This pitch is more than incredibly crass. It is really just outright pimping of hired poseurs to online students willing to "pay for performance." With the massive growth of online education, such parasitic companies have sprung up like weeds, presenting a serious threat to program integrity.

05/26/2015: Online Learning: What Next?, by Lucie Lapovsky, Forbes - On-line learning today provides a quality alternative to on-the-ground courses. It offers students greater flexibility as to time and place as most courses are offered asynchronously, meaning students can take them at any time of the day or night. Most chief academic officers at colleges and universities were very skeptical of online learning when it was in its infancy, today, according to a recent survey, more than 70% of them now believe it is critical to their long-term strategy.


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College Readiness

Reports & Articles


07/27/2015: Black Students Lagging in College Readiness Despite Taking Prep Courses, by Jamaal Abdul-Alim, Diverse - Officials at ACT say the statistics-based on national ACT data and a new report titled "The Condition of College & Career Readiness 2014: African American Students"-suggest that African-American students are being subjected to less rigorous instruction than that of their peers who perform better on the ACT.


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Remedial Education

Reports & Articles


07/29/2015: Multifactor Placement for Adults, by Matt Reed, Inside Higher Ed - Common sense - and more practical issues - suggest that a high school GPA is a better indicator when it's a year old than when it's ten years old. So using high school GPA as part of a "multi-factor placement" system is fine for traditional-age students, but not so great for adults.

07/20/2015: Reforming Developmental Education for Student Postsecondary Success, by Kathy Reeves Bracco, Kim Austin, Daniel Bugler, and Neal Finkelstein, WestEd - This brief examines two states' recent efforts to redesign their developmental education programs to support student success.

07/11/2015: Series Of Reports Offer First Glance At Developmental Education Changes In Florida, Florida College Access Network - Researchers at Florida State University's Center for Postsecondary Success (CPS) have released three comprehensive reports assessing the implementation and outcomes of Florida's recent developmental education reform efforts.    


To view our entire Remedial Education section, click here.

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College Completion

Reports & Articles


07/23/2015: Colleges Give Drifting Students Maps to Help Them Find Their Way to Graduation, by Jon Marcus, The Hechinger Report - Only 5 percent of community college students earn their two-year degrees within two years, according to the advocacy group Complete College America, racking up about 21 credits more than they need, on average, many of which don't count toward graduation in specific majors.

07/13/2015: How a 1970s Policy Can Boost Completion Rates Today, by Todd Hitchcock and Mary Beth Lakin, eCampus News - How extending Credit for Prior Learning can accelerate college completion and improve employability.

To view our entire College Completion section, click here. 

Workforce Development

Reports & Articles


07/28/2015: As Tech Booms, Workers Turn to Coding for Career Change, by Steve Lohr, The New York Times - a 26-year-old math major, took a three-month course in computer programming and data analysis. As a waiter, he made $20,000 a year. His starting salary last year as a data scientist at a web start-up here was more than $100,000.

07/23/2015: The Path Least Taken II - Preparing Non-college Goers for Success, by Jim Hull, Center for Public Education (CPE) - In this second study of the series, we explore various job-related and social outcomes of the non-college goers by age 26, and relate these to the preparation they had in school in order to gain insights into what defines "career readiness" for high school graduates.

07/22/2015: Preparing the Next Generation of Manufacturers Through Community Colleges (Part 1), by Liz Sablich, Brookings, The Brown Center Chalkboard - A diverse and distinguished panel of experts joined Brookings Vice President Darrell West to discuss the future of the manufacturing labor force development. Despite their varying backgrounds and specific areas of expertise, the panelists often echoed one another in identifying priority policies and practices that should guide the future of workforce development, training, and education in the United States.  


To view our entire Workforce Development section, click here.

Technology Adoption

Reports & Articles


07/28/2015: How IT Will Elevate Educational Access and Quality, by David Weldon, Campus Technology - LeBlanc said he sees technology as central to the next evolutionary step in higher education, and he challenged colleges and universities to embrace and expand efforts around distance learning. The goal is not just to add enrollment numbers but to be able to offer classes, programs and degrees to those who have never had such opportunities before.

07/15/2015: Connecting Learners With a Digital Ecosystem, by David Raths, Campus Technology - Some innovations involve incremental improvements in how a campus uses technology to refine a classroom or administrative process. Others are more transformational. The cyberlearning ecosystem launched in 2014 at Jackson State University (MS) is in the latter category. Combining ubiquitous iPads for students with digital textbook development by faculty, CyberLearning@JSU is the first complete digital teaching and learning ecosystem at a state institution in the country, according to the university.     


To view our entire Technology Adoption section, click here.

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Data Analysis & Assessment

Reports & Articles  


07/27/2015: Carnegie Mellon Project Revives Failed InBloom Dream to Store and Analyze Student Data, by Jill Barshay, Hechinger Report - LearnSphere, a new $5 million federally-funded project at Carnegie Mellon University, aims to become "the biggest open repository of education data" in the world, according to the project leader, Ken Koedinger.

07/2015: Driving Toward Greater Postsecondary Attainment Using Data, by Julie Ajinkya and Melissa Moreland, Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) - Use this guidebook to learn more about different data tools that communities use to support students and improve educational outcomes, and how you could potentially adopt these tools in your own communities.

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Funding & Economics

Reports & Articles


07/27/2015: Transparency, Debt, and Context, by Matt Reed, Inside Higher Ed - Should community college students borrow more? It seems like a ridiculous question, given the recent focus on student loan burdens and the move towards free community college. But there's actually a serious argument for it.

07/23/2015: Fixing FAFSA, by Kristin D. Conklin, The Hill - Revising the federal financial aid process would give peace of mind to America's young people, who are still largely first generation college students and increasingly worried about college affordability. Today, 18-year olds are expected to endure an hour-long FAFSA application process only to be told how much aid they will NOT receive.

07/15/2015: Income-Driven Student Loan Repayment Plans Can Cost More, by Betsy Mayotte, U.S. News and World Report - Last week, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced that plans are moving forward to expand access to an income-driven repayment plan that caps federal student loan borrowers' payments at 10 percent of their discretionary income.  


To view our entire Funding & Economics section, click here.

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Transfer & Articulation

Reports & Articles


07/28/2015: First National Reverse Transfer Solution Now Available, National Student Clearinghouse - The National Student Clearinghouse announces the general availability of its landmark Reverse Transfer service. As many as two million eligible students could be awarded an associate degree through Reverse Transfer, the first national automated solution to enable four- and two-year institutions to securely and efficiently exchange reverse transfer student data.

07/16/2015: Increasing Community College Student Transfer Rates, by Adela Soliz, Brookings, The Brown Center Chalkboard - Studies have ignored the diversity across states' articulation agreements.  For example, some states have tried to increase transfer rates by developing common course numbering systems, while others have developed agreements that guarantee the transfer of particular course credits or sets of courses.


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