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ERIC Number: ED564940
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 382
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3036-6001-6
Student Civic Engagement and For-Profit Higher Education: Public Policies and Private Goods
Avakian, Seth David
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Northeastern University
Democracy is the practice of self-rule; its citizens actively participate in governance. Who teaches participative democracy, what is taught, and how it is taught are significant determinants of how democracy functions. In the United States, the two core justifications for the public subsidy of higher education are that it prepares citizens for productive employment and participation in civic life. The public purpose of higher education is challenged by the privatization of higher education; most explicitly manifested in the growth and practices of for-profit higher education. The for-profit sector employs a corporate-governed, student-as-customer, "no-frills" model of education that may result in a for-profit educational experience that does not adequately develop students' civic engagement. The purpose of this dissertation is to determine if students who attend for-profit institutions of higher education in the United States have different levels of civic engagement when compared to students who attend non-profit institutions. Following this, I suggest explanations for the growth and subsidy of a for-profit sector of higher education that results in students with lower levels of civic engagement than students attending non-profit institutions. Explanations include a shift in federal support of the public-serving purpose of higher education towards supporting private-good outcomes, a federal government that funds, but retains limited capacity to regulate higher education, and advances in technology that eliminate geopolitical borders. Most significantly, I characterize the growth and practices of the for-profit sector as symptoms of neoliberalism, a global change in democratic institutions and society. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A