Jordan Weissmann at The Atlantic has a story on the revelations that George Washington University rejected applicants on the grounds that they would have required financial aid. Apparently the university had advertised itself as "need-blind" in its admissions policies, but in fact the admissions office ended up rejecting marginal needy applicants in favor of marginal … Continue reading GWU Admissions and the Economics of Higher Ed
An article on the plight of adjunct professors in higher education, "Labor of Love or Cheap Labor? The Plight of Adjunct Professors," was brought to my attention by its author, Celine James. Ms. James kindly asked me for my thoughts about her article. I thought Pileus readers might be interested in what I sent her. … Continue reading Adjunct Professors and the Modern Guild
Reason has a symposium on the future of higher education in its latest issue. For my money, the best contribution comes from Reason.com editor Nick Gillespie, who sounds remarkably Oakeshottian in this passage: The real existential threat to higher ed comes from folks who conceive of college as a sort of high-end vocational-tech program. Right-leaning … Continue reading *Reason* on the Higher Ed Bubble
Apropos my "Don't Go to Grad School" post from a couple of weeks ago, here are some hard data on the employment difficulties of new PhD's in the hard sciences and humanities.
It's that time of year again: sending in the last of the grad-school reference letters. Over time, my answers to students who request grad school reference letters, particularly for PhD programs, have become more and more emphatic: don't do it. It doesn't matter how smart you are, or how good your grades have been. The … Continue reading Don’t Go to Grad School
Tyler Cowen makes the case that a large, inefficient public sector can be a good thing: we should not be trying to squeeze the entire economy into the shoebox of the dynamic but risky “Economy I.” For public choice reasons, as well understood by Karl Polanyi (an underrated public choice theorist if there ever was … Continue reading Saturday Afternoon Bemusement
For those of you who are trying to supplement your child's schooling or wish to buck the entire public/private school system altogether, I'd like to recommend the Khan Academy. Started by former hedge fund manager Sal Khan, the Khan Academy is essentially a free on-line school that teaches everything from basic addition to the French Revolution … Continue reading Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread