ERIC Number: ED161362
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-May
Reference Count: 0
Has the Golden Age of Higher Education Come to an Abrupt End? AIR Forum Paper 1978.
Witmer, David R.
Findings of research conducted by Richard B. Freeman and J. Herbert Hollomon concerning the benefits of higher education are disputed. The variations in data choice and use are discussed that seem to explain differences in the findings of Freeman and a completely separate study conducted by the author. Freeman reported that the rate of return on social investments in college training from men declined, and that the "golden age" of higher education came to an abrupt end at the outset of the l970s. Freeman used college income and tuition charges rather than expenditures as the basis of costs, and he estimated the costs for 1972 on the basis of percentage change in median public tuition charges rather than using reports of actual expenditures. These failures to use data that reflect the actual costs of instruction yield internal rates of return that are inaccurate and unrealistically low. Another important difference between Freeman's results and the author's was due to the choice of income difference data on the basis of which returns to investments in higher education instruction were estimated. Little evidence of decline in the social rate of return on investments in college education for men was found by the author. Statistical data are presented on income and costs for men and women, and the cumulative effects of the computations are briefly described. (SW)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Freeman (Richard); Hollomon (J Herbert)
Note: Paper presented at the annual Association for Institutional Research Forum (18th, Houston, Texas, May 21-25, 1978)