ERIC Number: ED051735
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1971-Feb
Reference Count: 0
Is "Higher" Education Really "Better" Education?
Astin, Alexander W.
Secondary schools have traditionally looked to higher education for guidance and leadership, yet they might do better looking elsewhere. Instead of teaching being considered a plum, it is considered a burden, and outstanding faculty may be lured to an institution with the promise of no undergraduate classes. Colleges base their reputation often on the achievement of their graduates, ignoring the fact that their selective admission policies practically assure the success of a good portion of their students who already possess all the needed attributes before they even enter college. Arguments against open admission policies include the fear of lowering academic standards, but academic standards should not be measured by the number of educationally superior students admitted, but by the success the institution has in educating its students for life and in contributing to the students' personal development. Procedures should be established for evaluating institutions and their effectiveness should be measured by taking into account the students' initial level of performance and improvement in performance over time. Evaluation of faculty members is also essential, and one way would be to administer a departmental test to all students taking a particular course and to apply multiple criteria of performance, including the progress the individual student has made. (AF)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Council on Education, Washington, DC.
Note: Paper presented at the Danforth-Kettering Conference on articulation between secondary and higher education, Washington, D.C., February 23-25, 1971