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ERIC Number: EJ793191
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-0009-1383
A New Accountability Metric for a New Time: A Proposed Graduation Efficiency Measure
Cohen, Howard; Ibrahim, Nabile
Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, v40 n3 p47-52 May-Jun 2008
In this article, the authors propose "graduation efficiency" as a metric that can show the success of universities in graduating students. They are not suggesting that the current measure of graduation rates be abandoned, but rather that they be supplemented with other measures that could round out the picture of how colleges and universities are doing in producing graduates. The currently-used "Graduation Efficiency Index"--used in some states--calculates efficiency in terms of a reduction of excessive credits attempted beyond a pre-determined maximum. That would include a student's repeated course credits, dropped credits, and credits taken beyond the minimum required for graduation. These inefficiencies represent additional costs to educate each student and certainly merit tracking. However, this measure does not address the more "macro" question of producing graduates. The new metrics model proposed by these authors has six advantages: (1) easily calculated from existing data; (2) addresses the public-policy concern about the production of graduates in relation to the investment in higher education; (3) captures all matriculated students, rather than a small subset of traditional students; (4) does not require extensive tracking of, or data collection on, individuals; (5) does not favor traditional colleges and universities or use a private-education model to evaluate public higher education; and (6) uses the traditional standard of four years as its graduation efficiency factor. The authors contend that these simple measures of graduation efficiency will help colleges and universities benchmark their effectiveness at graduating students and engage in internal dialogue about how to be more successful. (Contains 3 tables and 5 resources.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A