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ERIC Number: ED521778
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jun-24
Pages: 21
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
Opportunities for Efficiency and Innovation: A Primer on How to Cut College Costs. Working Paper 2011-02
Fried, Vance H.
American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
In this paper the author explores how colleges whose primary mission is undergraduate education can strategically allocate resources in a way that reduces costs and prioritizes teaching and learning. He starts from a provocative thought-experiment--what would it cost to educate undergraduates at a hypothetical college built from scratch?--and uses the exercise to identify areas that are ripe for cost savings. Rather than focusing only on the conspicuous, big-ticket items that tend to dominate debates about college costs, the author argues that the real levers for increasing efficiency include rethinking student-faculty ratios, eliminating under-enrolled programs, and trimming unnecessary administrative positions. This paper also outlines how policymakers can create incentives for undergraduate colleges to pursue reforms that will make them more cost-effective. (Contains 6 tables and 19 endnotes.)
American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. 1150 Seventeenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-862-5800; Fax: 202-862-7177; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Policymakers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research