In much of the world, higher education access is available to a limited number of people, although the federal government fully pays for education. How does limited access both promote and hinder education for the public good? Conversely, how does open access both promote and hinder education for the public good?
Access to higher education has been a challenge for the United State Education system for a long time now. Rising cost of education, challenging economic times and a consistently rising population without matched expansion of higher education institutions have simply compounded limited access to higher education. Institutions of higher education have also been increasing tuition fees at a much rate than the median increase in income for most families . A 2011 report by the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education paints even a bleaker situation with regard to access to higher learning and completion courses for already enrolled students. The report argues that affordability of college tuition is the leading cause for limited access. While the federal government may be fully funding students who go through public institutions, the number of viable student means that not all students will access the loan facility. The question that needs to be addressed is what is the impact of such limited access on general public good?
The impact of limited access bears adverse effect of the public good. Limited access to higher education implies that only the rich, who may afford high tuition fees, have the priority in accessing higher education. Such access to higher learning will further deepen economic in equality and by extension social inequality will thrive in the society. The rich, who can access higher education get better jobs and in the process get rich and richer. The result is a society with a huge gap between the rich and the poor making a bad social state dire.
While limited access may adversely impact public education, others may argue that limited access may improve the quality of education. Limited access allows the teaching staff and the university to concentrate and improve on facilities. Similarly, leaner programs give room for research and development. Thus limiting access may lead to improved quality standards.
On the other hand, open access to higher education will have a better outcome. Open to higher learning implies that most of the citizens will go through tertiary training that may be used in several fields of expertise. Additionally, a highly educated citizenry implies that research and development will prosper leading to a better community.
In the United States, demand for access to higher education and demand for an educated citizenry is constantly increasing. What might be the result of having too many highly educated people in a given nation?
The concept of fully or partially paid higher education is so as to encourage as many young citizens as possible to pursue higher education. The most likely outcome is that most of citizens with be educated leading to an extremely skilled population. There are several outcomes that could be associated with such a highly educated citizenry.
One of the outcomes that can be expected for a highly educated citizenry is increased earnings for the population. Hossler, (2000) argues the difference between the income levels of different populations is due to the difference in education levels. For instance, the shift of manufacturing businesses to Asia is due to low labor costs associated with the East . Such low labor cost is due to large number of uneducated laborers willing to work for much less. In the United States, the difference by incomes of educated university workers and a non-trained high school graduates is over 65% . This implies that an educated worker earns three times the income of an untrained worker.
An educated citizenry also has a huge advantage of meeting the expert needs of a population. For any country to prosper, such a nation requires a wide field of expertise to lead the development of key infrastructure and research into new methods of increasing output. A learned citizenry will further agitate for economic and social equality with open debate and exploration of ideas. An educated citizenry may also export some of its expertise to needy regions there by earning foreign income. The advantages of an educated citizenry can never be fully exhausted.
Proliferation of private colleges and universities is a global phenomenon that has resulted from lack of access to higher education and the mobility of educational institutions (Burton, 2006; McBurnie & Ziguras, 2007). Does the emergence of private education enhance or detract from the public education sector?
It is without doubt that private education institutions have become part and parcel of the United States education system. Private universities have been highly rated in terms of the standards of education that they offer. From the most prestigious colleges such as Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard to Columbia University, private institutions make up most of the defining institution of higher education. The spread and importance of private institutions is not limited to the United States. Other nations in the world have experienced such a huge emergence of private institutions. However, it is arguable to define the impact of private universities in public education.
First, there are several advantages that private institutions transfer to public education system. Ideally, the concept private education seeks to ‘fill gaps’ that pubic institution may be seen to ignore . Most private universities offer highly specialized training and therefore invest in lean array of courses. For instance, MIT has specialized in science oriented research and development making important leaps in the world of science. This encourages public institutions to improve on their quality in order to appear competitive.
On the contrary, the emergence of private institution may have adversely affected public education. Private institutions are a business venture whose main goal is to report profits. For this reasons, the quality of education advanced to the student may be curtailed in order to maintain profitability. Either, these institutions offer incentives to students that may lead to higher enrollment as compared to their pubic counterparts. The result is ‘garage universities’ taking tuition fees only to offer substandard training to a vast majority of the citizens .
What is the effect of private higher education institutions on the public higher education system in Bulgaria, Brazil, and Japan? How does the cost of private education and public education compare in these nations? How does the cost of private education in these nations compare to the cost of private institutions in the United States? What are some strategies for lessening the effect of these cost differences on the student population in these nations?
The idea of privatized institutions of higher learning is not a new concept. The strongest tradition of private education has been practiced in East Asia. For over a century, Japanese education has been dominated by private institutions. Today, nearly 80% of all students attending higher education in Japan are in private universities . The extent to which private institutions in Japan dominate the education sector is quite wide, ranging from tertiary training immediately after secondary level to highly specialized post-graduate training. However, the government highly regulates the private education sector. The government has the chance of improving on public universities due to high enrollments in private universities. This gives the government room to impose stricter regulations on private universities.
In Latin America, the concept of private universities has been spreading with much zeal. Brazil has been leading the entire Latin America in terms of enrollment into private universities. Altbach & Levy (2004) asserts that in the past decade over half of enrollments into public universities have been into private universities. Brazil, unlike Japan has less strict government regulations.
Bulgaria, on the other hand, has a less different situation as compared to the other two nations. Bulgaria was part of the Soviet Union that was very much dominated by a purely public sector education system. Much of communist Russia did not allow private education institutions therefore the region has not experienced much of private university enrollment. However, after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Bulgaria has since experience foray private universities. While the proportion of private university enrolment is significantly low, the trend is set to increase with time.
With regard to tuition fees, private universities in Japan, Brazil and Bulgaria demand higher fees than their public counter parts. In comparison to private institutions in the United States, these countries charge much lower fees.
What role does the financial aid office play in overall campus budget management? How does the student financial aid office work with the financial operations office to assure that sufficient funds exist for student enrollment?
The United States public higher education system is made of public universities aided by the financial aid office of the federal and state governments. The role of financial aid in the public university system is directly link to achieving institutional objectives and to a greater extent to the objectives of the public education system. State and federal financial aid offices operate with institutions in order to offer good support. Hence the budgeting offices have to take concerted effort in working with the financial aid office.
The first way in which universities can get to attain their objectives is working towards better liaising between the financial aid offices and the budget management offices of universities. Budget management offices have the responsibility of getting critical resources to the necessary units of the campus. However, in order to properly run the university, prior knowledge of enrolment is vital in order to ascertain the amount inflow expected from financial aid offices.
A significant strategy that could be employed is the use of data and information centers. Financial aid offices and campus budget management offices could jointly developed information centers backed by real time networks. This will allow budgeting offices to have better updated information in order to effectively make budgets.
Enrollment planning is a critical factor in budget planning. How might the enrollment management departments and the financial planning departments work together to develop an income projection for an upcoming academic year? What ethical issues must be addressed and incorporated into the planning? How might the institution's mission play a role in budget planning?
However, in working through enrollment programs different universities adopt different strategies. While universities adopt the low enrollment, high tuition, high-aid strategy, some adopt a more subtle strategy. These universities prefer to high-enrollments low-tuition strategy in order to gain from higher numbers financial aid recipients.
There are ethical concerns associated with enrollment management based on financial decisions. The process of enrollment of students to higher education should be done with equity. The concept of decided to whether students based on the prospective of financial aid is now the current industry practice by most universities. Institutions that do not apply such strategies are at a disadvantage in getting student.
Competition is now pegged on financial decisions which should not be the case. To this end institutions should shift enrolment to be based on merit.
National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education . (2011, June). Affordability and Transfer: Critical to Increasing Baccalaureate Degree Completion. Retrieved Sep 25, 2012, from http://www.highereducation.org/reports/pa_at/PolicyAlert_06-2011.pdf: www.highereducation.org
Altbach, P., & Levy, D. (2004). Private Higher Education A Global Revolution. Retrieved Sep 25, 2012, from www.sensepublishers.com: www.sensepublishers.com/catalog/files/90-77874-08-9.pdf
Eckel, P. D., & King, J. E. (2004). An Overview of Higher Education in the United States; Diversity,Access and the Role of the Marketplace. Retrieved Sep 25, 2012, from www.acenet.edu: http://www.acenet.edu/bookstore/pdf/2004_higher_ed_overview.pdf
Georgianna, D., & Jones, R. T. (2005). Privatizing the Benefits from Higher Education and Its Effect on Access. Retrieved Sep 25, 2012, from www.aft.org: http://www.aft.org/pdfs/highered/academic/january07/Georgianna_Jones.pdf
Gurría, A. (2012, Sep 16). Investing in people, skills and education for growth and jobs. Retrieved Sep 25, 2012, from http://www.universityworldnews.com: http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20120913121509927
Hossler, D. (2000). The Role of Financial Aid in. Retrieved Sep 25, 2012, from www.uccs.edu: http://www.uccs.edu/Documents/retention/2000%20The%20Role%20of%20Financial%20Aid%20in%20Enrollment%20Management.pdf