NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED536703
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
So What Now? Practical Strategies for Shifting the Cost Conversation
Delta Project on Postsecondary Education Costs, Productivity and Accountability
Policy discussions about funding in higher education focus primarily on revenues needed to balance budgets from year to year, rather than on how funds need to be invested to meet strategic priorities. The data in "Trends" show that the incremental approach to fundraising and spending has resulted in a slow disinvestment in core instructional capacity at a majority of institutions. Now more than ever, we need straightforward and strategic policy conversations about money and priorities that are guided by sound metrics. Decisions need to be based on data and not anecdote, and funding increases, whether from tuition or state appropriations, should be justified based on evidence that resources are going to pay for essential priorities. There are five basic steps that higher education leaders and policymakers can take to refocus finance conversations in a way that addresses the troubling trend of spending more and getting less. These are: (1) Set sharp-edged goals for educational attainment; (2) Look at spending patterns and align spending with strategic priorities; (3) Increase degree productivity by reducing the number of excess credits taken by students and the time it takes students to get a degree; (4) Strengthen public accountability for spending; and (5) Improve governing board oversight of spending.
Delta Project on Postsecondary Education Costs, Productivity and Accountability. Available from: Delta Cost Project at American Institutes for Research. 1000 Thomas Jefferson Street NW, Washington, DC 20007. Tel: 202-403-5410; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Delta Project on Postsecondary Education Costs, Productivity and Accountability
Identifiers - Location: Arizona; Kentucky; Maryland; Mississippi; Ohio; Wisconsin