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ERIC Number: ED539742
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Nov
Pages: 30
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Improving the College Scorecard: Using Student Feedback to Create an Effective Disclosure
Morgan, Julie Margetta; Dechter, Gadi
Center for American Progress
The White House will soon unveil a final version of its "college scorecard"--an online tool giving college-bound students and their families a hype-free snapshot of reliable information about any U.S. campus: real costs, graduation rates, student debt statistics, and earning potential of graduates. The college scorecard is a good idea and it has the potential to make college-bound students smarter consumers. The scorecard is part of a major effort by the White House and the U.S. Department of Education to understand and improve the college selection process. Though policymakers are working diligently and conscientiously to design a scorecard that will help students and families, the college scorecard has not been subjected to systematic testing by actual students and parents. At the White House's invitation, many college admissions and financial aid experts, including some from CAP, are weighing in on the college scorecard design. These experts are making every effort to put themselves in the shoes of prospective college students and are scrutinizing the draft scorecard for potentially confusing language or missing information. But designing an effective information sheet about college costs, debt, and graduation rates is hard without feedback from actual users. This report uses the government college scorecard project as an opportunity to explore how testing might lead to more effective disclosures. The authors took the college scorecard to college-bound high school students, asking them for feedback on design, content, and overall effectiveness. In this paper, the authors discuss the findings of these focus groups, make recommendations specific to the college scorecard project, and draw some overall recommendations for improving the readability and usability of government disclosures. Principles of disclosure design are appended. (Contains 12 figures and 22 endnotes.)
Center for American Progress. 1333 H Street NW 10th Floor, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-682-1611; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center for American Progress
Identifiers - Location: United States