Education

Obama's University Scorecard Plan Deserves an "F"

It will promote a political agenda, not educational goals

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President Obama's proposal to create a federal scorecard for universities in two years has critics upset. "Americans should think … hard before allowing the federal government to dominate … higher education," cautions The Wall Street Journal.

The problem isn't that some new government formula would take control of higher education. Before Obama set foot in office, the federal government was already in the driver's seat. Uncle Sam dominates higher education with the $150 billion in financial aid it gives out every year, more than twice the education spending of all 50 states combined.

The problem is that the new government scorecard is as flawed as the ones it would replace. And it would do little to fight the main problem in higher education — inflation disconnected from actual learning in college.

The sticker price for tuition at four-year public colleges has grown 27% above inflation over the past five years. That's in part because students have little data to compare the costs of college with the benefit of attending particular schools.

Most rating systems measure factors that have little to do with what learning happens at colleges. The U.S. News and World Report ratings, the most influential, are largely based on fame, wealth and exclusivity. Universities that reject more applicants get higher scores because they are more "exclusive." Likewise, colleges better at shaking down rich alumni are ranked higher.

Other ratings have their own problems. The Washington Monthly rates colleges not on "what colleges can do for you, but what colleges are doing for the country." Colleges get higher ratings for graduating social workers than for business leaders.

Few such ratings include measures of learning, the only thing that really matters. The Obama plan would do nothing to fix that. Despite lip service to outcomes such as graduation rates and the ability to pay off student loans, measures that already exist, the administration's proposal includes no information on how the school is educating its students. How much do their skills improve? How do they compare in earnings with students with the same high school test scores?

Instead, the proposal would tie schools' financial aid to "affordability and accessibility." Universities graduating more low-income students receiving federal Pell grants would get a higher rating. In short, existing federal aid will justify more future federal aid. The ratings would promote political, not educational, goals.

What will help isn't another rating system, but persuading universities to measure real learning.

Most higher education experts regard the Collegiate Learning Assessment as a good measure of how higher education is increasing the skills of students. It tests a sample of entering and graduating students to measure the improvement in their critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills. One-third of students in universities that use such tests show no gains after four years, which is why other universities aren't clamoring to adopt them.

Texas mandates that its public universities use the test and publish the results. Obama needn't go that far. But there would be nothing wrong with making federal aid conditional on the use of these tests.

The right way to prod universities to provide cost-effective education isn't another rating plan, but rather to empower students with information about just what they are getting.

This column originally appeared in USA Today

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  1. America’s best colleges are those that work hardest to help economically disadvantaged students earn the credentials that the job market demands. … They’re the colleges that emphasize the obligations students have to serve their communities and the nation at large. From that perspective, higher education excellence starts to take on a very different meaning

    I suppose Washington Monthly rates Ayn Rand University pretty low.

    1. Ironically so – since Ayn Rand university is *most* likely to “. . .work hardest to help economically disadvantaged students earn the credentials that the job market demands . . .”

      Of course, they’ll score that far lower than “. . . colleges that emphasize the obligations students have to serve their communities and the nation at large.”

      Its the same sort of twisted weighting that gives Cuban healthcare a high rating – equality of outcome being considered more important than, you know, actual healthcare.

  2. So Virginia Dare Rae Dawn Chong could be symbolic of the coming racial nirvana that immigration enthusiasts are forced to start fantasizing about when you compel them to look at the statistical consequences of current policy.

  3. Yummy, yummy, Rae Dawn Chong.

    1. Ever since Quest For Fire I’ve been a fan.

  4. It tests a sample of entering and graduating students to measure the improvement in their critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills.

    I’m currently in college studying civil engineering. I never gave a thought to improving my “critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills.” I thought I already taken care of that done when I took the SAT. I highly doubt that if I took the SAT again now I’d score higher than I did because I came to study civil engineering, not the motherfucking SAT. This sounds like just another attempt by liberals and RINOs to shove politics into universities and make students the pawns in their never ending quest to improve test scores.

  5. Merkel wins a third term as chancellor

    1. By a landslide. Unfortunately the FDP got shithoused because a lot of their historic voters just voted for Merkel’s Christian Democrat party. That means Merkel might have to form some kind of coalition government with the Social Democrats.

      Still, it’s nice to see relatively conservative/libertarian parties doing well in Europe and Australia. Hopefully this can be a little bit of a reversal of the left-wing idiocy that the western world has fallen into over the last half century.

      The Greens got obliterated in the election too, so hopefully the Germans will move away from their Quixotic green energy policies that are jacking up the price of energy.

      1. one German dude on the radio said he didn’t like Merkel because she was too boring.

        1. You Know Which Other German Chancellor was more exciting?

          1. I understand Helmut Kohl was a riot.

          2. Erich Honecker?

          3. Konrad Adenauer?

          4. Konrad Adenauer?

        2. one German dude on the radio said he didn’t like Merkel because she was too boring.

          It’s just that she used to be able to show some nice cleavage and that removed her from too boring, but now her tits have succumbed to gravity and she has a beer gut (which eventually, every German is doomed to have).

        3. What is it with people judging leaders as if they’re there to fucking entertain?

          It’s retarded and leaves folks like that guy vulnerable to demagogues.

          Sheesh.

      2. conservative/libertarian parties

        What exactly does that mean in Europa? I still don’t get European politics. But I am assuming that Libertarian there means that the government needs to only be super duper massive instead of infinitely massive? Sort of like, you can wipe your own arse, but you still need a bureaucrat to watch you brush your teeth?

        1. FDP is legitimately classical liberal. Generally they get 8-10% of the vote, but they only got 4.8 this time because a lot of their voters went for Merkel.

          The Christian Democrats are a bit more statist than the FDP, but even they aren’t that bad. I’d take Merkel as a president over 99% of the people in the Democrat or Republican parties.

          Australia elected a relatively libertarian government. Abbot is personally very socially conservative, which the leftists tried to hold against him, but I liked the way he put his political philosophy. He said that he is personally against divorce, for example, but would never think of outlawing it. He’s also personally against homosexuality as a matter of his religion, but he’s stated that he tries to treat people as people and not pigeonhole them based on their sexual proclivities. He has a lesbian sister that he’s voiced support for, too.

          I like what Abbott says, but he’s a politician so he could go back on everything he’s said so far. If he governs the way he says he’ll govern, I don’t see myself having many problems with him. He actually ran on the repeal of Australia’s carbon tax, so that’s nice.

          Abbott is more socially conservative than I’d prefer, particularly on issues like eugenics, divorce and the like, but I think someone like him will do less damage than the rabid leftists who have run Labour for the last several years.

          1. It’s almost like you’re saying that there is hope for the world to be saved from the progressives apocalypse.

            I really do want to believe that.

          2. Yeah but they’re not above sending bail outs, to other countries.

      3. Merkel co?pted many of the Green’s quixotic energy policies. The CDU is now on board with ending nuclear power use in Germany.

  6. Maps: The most popular baby names by state

    People aren’t terribly original, and when they are they do something stupid like what Floridians name their sons.

    1. There’s always a guy like this in the comments:

      Obbop (URL) on Sep 21, 9:17 AM said:
      With 7 BILLION virus-like parasitic humans infesting this nice planet and with the number growing every second we should, instead, be applauding and concentrating our attention upon the folks who decline spawning.

      Indeed.

      1. Obbop

        I applaud the notion of Obbop killing himself, now, to help alleviate this infestation now.

        1. Maybe he’s part of the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement (VHEMT). Sadly their web designer died in 1998 and left no heir to replace himself. They don’t believe in offing anyone, just not procreating, although I’d assume there’d have to be some hard work to save enough medicine and food for the last generation to survive to a ripe old age before passing into history.

          1. I really do hope that all of the progressives join that movement. It’s for mother Gaia, after all. They could be like the Shakers, and maybe they can also make some really cool furniture.

  7. I normally really hate these dumb videos where they go up and ask people a question and then laugh at idiots who can’t answer. They obviously edit out all the people who probably get the answer right in order to make the general population look less informed than it actually is.

    Still, this video of people getting asked to name the amendments in the Bill of Rights is hilarious just because of this woman’s comments.

    One woman even suggested removing the Second Amendment, suggesting learning Tai Kwon Do for self defense would be an adequate replacement.

    “There is too many people getting killed with guns that should not be in this world,” she said. “There is other ways to protect yourself.”

    “Like?” Joseph asked.

    “Ugh ? Tai Kwon Do,” she replies.

    1. Tai Kwon Do,” she replies

      Thug: Give me all your shit, biattchhh!

      Woman: Back off, I know Tai Kwon Do, you’re asking for it!

      Thug: *BANG* *BANG* *BANG* BANG*

      Sounds like a really great plan. Liberals are so smart!

      1. Even without the Bang Bang, what if the crook happens to be better at Tai Kwon Do? Like a 9th degree blackbelt?

        1. Or, he happens to be, you know, a guy, where in all except for the movies, he will just take her shit at will, if she has no defense outside of physical ability.

          1. I guess what I am trying to say here, is that despite the metaphysical reality bending abilities of the feminists, there really is a reason, outside of the patriarchy, why there are no women in the NFL.

            1. God made man, Sam Colt made them equal.

        2. You think she couldn’t unleash her inner evil harpy to foil the plans of the nefarious crook?

          “Harcourt Fenton Mudd…”

      2. I’ll have you know that these hands are registered as deadly weapons.

        1. I’m legally obligated to inform you that I took a karate lesson when I was 11. I’d be a regular ninja by now if my mom could’ve arranged a carpool. – Howard Wolowitz

  8. Obama’s University Scorecard Plan Deserves an “F”

    I give a big fat F- to everything that our amateurish clown in chief has done, since day one in office.

    Shikha is being way too generous giving the loser an F. She must have some of that empathy thing in her genes. Which has me confused, because, I mean, just look at her, fer gawds sake, she looks like an Indian version of Ayn Rand, she must be pure evil.

  9. PROGRESS!

    “In order to create a safe space, this program is open to people of color only. A similar conversation for white students, faculty and staff is planned for the spring semester.”

    1. Recently I watched a blithering propaganda piece in my high school math class where a Hispanic who tried so so hard to get an 1800 on the SAT(and was proud of that score)got into Cornell, obviously by affirmative action. And what was the first thing he did? He whined about how “I’m not confortable around people who aren’t Latino.” I guess only whites are supposed to celebrate diversity.

      1. Maybe things are different from when I took the SAT, but how is someone with an 1800 obviously an affirmative action beneficiary?

        1. According to Wikipedia it’s about the 81st percentile, or about 1220 on the old scoring system. That would be a little low for Cornell based on 2012 admissions data; I don’t know if that would qualify as “obviously” an affirmative action beneficiary, especially depending on GPA and whatnot.

      2. “I’m not confortable around people who aren’t Latino.”

        He should try that line on his first (real-world) job interview.

  10. Dutch King Willem-Alexander declares the end of the welfare state

    King Willem-Alexander delivered a message to the Dutch people from the government in a nationally televised address: the welfare state of the 20th century is gone.

    In its place a “participation society” is emerging, in which people must take responsibility for their own future and create their own social and financial safety nets, with less help from the national government.

    1. New twist on an old favorite: Kochtopus keeps finger tentacle in a Dutchman.

      1. I’m figuring Rule 34 applies here, but I really don’t want to know.

    2. “In its place a “participation society” is emerging, in which people must take responsibility for their own future and create their own social and financial safety nets, with less help from the national government”

      It’ll be interesting to see how much less ‘help’ comes from the government.

    3. Dutch King Willem-Alexander declares the end of the welfare state

      Obama is just now standing in his war room, and writing ‘Willem-Alexander’ on the next barrage of killer drones.

      1. first he is going to need Biden’s help to find “Dutchland” on his map.

        1. Don’t worry, Uncle Joe knows that Dutchland is somewhere in Asia. Maybe just blanket drone all of Asia to make sure we get them.

    4. “The shift to a ‘participation society’ is especially visible in social security and long-term care,” the king said, reading out to lawmakers a speech written for him by Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s government.

      “The classic welfare state of the second half of the 20th century in these areas in particular brought forth arrangements that are unsustainable in their current form.”

      1. Hit submit to soon.

        I added italics to that last post to point out that these are not the King’s opinions. This is the same as the throne speech that is read by the Queen or the Viceroy in British Commonwealth countries.

        If the socialists had won the last election the King would have been reading about nationalizing industries and expanding the welfare state.

        1. What is the point in having someone do that? That’s about as close to being an actual figurehead as I’ve ever heard of.

  11. The Jets are just giving this game away now

    1. Hey, you’re lucky. The entire 49er roster was just arrested for impersonating a football team!

      1. Hey, you’re lucky. The entire 49er roster was just arrested for impersonating a football team!

        And right after the mediots had already proclaimed them greatest team ever in all of history and rightful next in line super bowl champs.

        Makes me somewhat hopeful that Hitlary don’t win by landslide in 2016.

    2. Aren’t they up by 7?

      Bungals and the Pack was the best game of the day, IMO.

      1. That was such a bone-headed decision to go for it on 4th down before they fumbled. Take the points with the field goal, McCarthy.

        1. You really thought Mason Crosby was going to hit a long FG?

    3. The bigger news is that the Dolphins and the Titans are for real.

      1. The Dullfins suck ballz, just wait a little while for them to choke.

        Was nice to see the Titans beat the Dolts, though. Nothing funner than watching Philip Rivers throw one of his girly fits and cry on the field.

        The Seahawks are the team to beat, this year. One of the best defenses in the last decade.

        1. Miss Ellie was looking rather pouty against Carolina today.

          1. Miss Ellie was looking rather pouty against Carolina today.

            It’s time for his twin sister, Peytonia, to go down.

        2. The Jaguars scored more than I liked. Kind of embarrassing letting them get that many points.

          1. Yah, they scored more than they did against the Raiders. But it was all garbage points. When you are up by 40 points late in the game, against the worst team in the NFL, really, what do you have to prove? Is it worth an injury to a first stringer?

            1. Well, that’s why they put Tarvaris Jackson in, and he also scored. Still, letting them get even a touchdown is embarrassing. They didn’t even let the Niners get one last week.

              1. If McFadden didn’t fumble last week, that game would have been a blow out also.

                The Jags are the worst team in the NFL, no doubt.

                45/17 is a major blow out.

                Seattle are on their way to the superbowl, regardless.

                1. I don’t want to speak too soon, but one would hope so. I’m not really aware of a single team that can beat the Hawks. People thought the Niners might be able too…HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

      2. Don’t get too excited about the Chargers giving that game away. I’ll be going down to audition for CB this week – figure an old, fat, white dude can’t be any worse than the clowns they’ve been playing.

  12. Dolphins are 3-0.
    Yeah

    1. Wait until they play a real team. They did well to beat Indy and Atlanta, but those are not elite teams.

      1. Yeah they will be probably lose to the Saints next Monday night.

        1. Should be a good game. Saints are looking good, so far.

  13. You know, it’s not too late to start Reason Hit & Run Primetime Emmy Pick ‘Em League!

    1. Jesse already picked Jon Hamm’s penis to win everything

      1. Isn’t it just going to be a sob fest for Cory Monteith?

      2. I really have nothing to add that would make that better…

        1. You’ll be in your bunk?

          1. Eh, I don’t think Hamm is particularly attractive. I’d take Ewan McGregor and his over-exposed penis any day of the week.

    2. Hey Serious, if you are in Irvine, I have a food tip for you. I went to All That Korean BBQ for lunch today (Corner of Culver and I. Center Drive). All you can eat (2 hour time limit). I had brisket, beef belly and ribs. Everything was amazing. If I lived closer, I would go at least once a week…

      1. Thanks for the tip, that actually sounds like a pretty good place to hang out with my Young Americans for Liberty group after meetings or events.

        Shockingly, even though I’ve lived in Orange County my entire life, I’ve only had Korean BBQ once.

        1. I’ve only had Korean BBQ once

          WHAAA????

        2. This place is orders of magnitude better than the KBBQ I’ve had anywhere else. I would have stayed for the full 2 hours and had everything on the menu, but I have 2 young kids that were getting dangerous with the grill at the table.

          If you don’t find it 100% delicious, I’ll let you kick me in the penis and put it on YouTube. It’s that good.

        3. I’ve only had Korean BBQ once.

          So, you’re saying that you are not yet a real connoisseur of dog?

          1. This is why we can’t have nice things. And I think you are mistaking Koreans with Vietnamese.

            1. Not at all, I have a Korean friend at work. One week, we decided to have a carry in dinner, and he brought a Korean dish that was pretty damn good. I asked him what it was, and he told me, dog. He was joking, but said that they do eat dog in SK. We talked about that, and there is no doubt that there is a history of eating dog in SK.

              1. My mistake. I must be confusing dogs with cats.

                1. Koreans make dog soup. It’s supposed to be quite tasty, but you have to go out of your way to find it now. Younger Koreans are really embarrassed about it, particularly because they kick the dogs to death to maximize adrenaline and therefore flavor (apparently). I didn’t go out of my way to try it and sort of regret that.

              2. Prolly NK, too, but there’s none left. ‘Roof rabbits’ might still be available.

              3. And the word for it (kegogi) sounds uncomfortably close to beef (pulgogi).

                1. Bulgogi is “fire meat” it’s a particular preparation of meat, and doesn’t describe the animal. In Korea bulgogi is commonly pork.

                  sogogi is beef, dueijigogi is pork and dalkgogi is chicken (sorry, my romanizations are rough)

                  Grilled pig asshole is makjeong just in case that ever comes up

            2. Kagogi

  14. You probably won’t find too many hipsters on the internet anymore

    1. “It’s too crowded. No body goes there anymore.”

    2. Luddites gotta Luddite.

    3. *barf*

    1. Now how am I going to get to sleep?

      1. use one as a night shirt?

    2. Combining Pokemon and furries? Frightening.

    3. After seeing the dog sex bot, yesterday, I don’t have doubts about anything that people will buy. Not that I doubted that people will buy anything, in the first place.

    4. Nice. I think I’ll surprise the wife.

    5. The santorum zipper is a nice touch.

  15. Obama says fight for gun laws ‘ought to obsess us’

    President Barack Obama on Sunday memorialized the victims of the Washington Navy Yard shooting by urging Americans not to give up on a transformation in gun laws that he argued are to blame for an epidemic of violence. “There is nothing inevitable about it – it comes about because of decisions we make or fail to make,” Obama said.

    “Our tears are not enough,” Obama told thousands gathered to mourn at the Marine Barracks. “Our words and our prayers are not enough. If we really want to honor these 12 men and women, if we really want to be a country where we can go to work and go to school and walk our streets free from senseless violence without so many lives being stolen by a bullet from a gun, then we’re going to have to change.”

    Poor Barry. He just doesn’t know when to lay down and be a lame duck President.

    Fun video: Chris Matthews decries how “obsessed” those gun people are.

    1. Obama says fight for gun laws ‘ought to obsess us

      It’s only our obsession about how stupid he is that is derailing that great plan.

    2. ” it comes about because of decisions we make or fail to make”
      Fail to make=Not the decision I wanted

    3. President Barack Obama on Sunday memorialized the victims of the Washington Navy Yard shooting by urging Americans not to give up on a transformation in gun laws that he argued are to blame for an epidemic of violence.

      A.P. parrots this bullshit as if it’s fact, and yet, the U.S. murder rate is at its lowest in 100 years.

    4. “Why is it that … these tragic occurrences never seem to move us any closer to ensuring that guns don’t get into the hands of criminals or mentally unstable people?” [Washington Mayor Vincent] Gray asked. “I don’t know the answer. But I do know this – … the time has come for action.”

      Sorry, Gray — Animal House did it before, and better.

    5. Scary Barry’s’ Triumph des Willens, his bundlers have assured him that it still polls well. Why…Why won’t he just go gentle into that good night? Rage, rage against the dying of the outrage…

    6. “Our tears are not enough,” Obama told thousands gathered to mourn at the Marine Barracks.

      I’m sure all those lefty Marines were on board.

      1. Yeah, I wonder how the ones at the Marine Barracks (a few blocks away) at the time of the shooting with weapons and no ammo feel about it.

  16. Well, it turns out that CA government is really concerned with on-line privacy! They’ll make companies that sell on-line data, well, admit they sell data; lefty columnist not impressed, but I see no gripes about government data-grab:
    “Do-not-track bill a small step toward real privacy”
    http://www.sfgate.com/technolo…..832949.php

  17. Does anyone know how to switch back to an earlier version of the iPhone OS?

    Because the new one fucking sucks.

    1. Gizmodo did a thing on rolling back. I don’t have an iPhone so I can’t confirm that it works (actually Giz seems to not be able to either).

  18. if we really want to be a country where we can go to work and go to school and walk our streets free from senseless violence without so many lives being stolen by a bullet from a gun, then we’re going to have to change.

    If you conducted a superficial analysis (the type most favored by the gun grabbers) of the data from Chicago, you might be tempted to conclude black people should never be allowed to own guns. I wonder when the Consoler-in-Chief will address the nation with that as the centerpiece of a safer America.

    1. The obvious solution is background checks in order to have children.

  19. Breaking Bad headed toward a Cleveland Browns ending, judging by tonight’s show.

    Thank goodness the Boardwalk Empire offers something.

    1. NO SPOILERS

      also the Stillers think they might win

      1. 0-3.

        Happy for Trestman – being from Montreal and all. Guy is total class.

    2. I just hope Walt goes back and whacks those idiot killers – and that psychopath Lydia.

      Fucking Jesse. Being a rat doesn’t pay.

      Unless you’re Ken Linseman or Brad Marchand.

      1. HEY! I’m no rat…

    3. If only I had two copies of “Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium” on DVD

      1. I was kind of hoping for one of those spinning newspaper montages where we see in headlines the progression the government’s case against the White family.

  20. Something tells me that the maritime academies are going to get a C or lower….

    “AH! They’re called Cadets!?! Too militarized! And they make more at 21 than I do with my PhD!?!?!eleventy! Wheres the wimminz studies and How not to be a racist electives!?!”

    /progtard

  21. mandati che le universit? pubbliche utilizzano il test e pubblicare i risultati. Obama non ha bisogno di andare cos? lontano. Ma non ci sarebbe nulla di male nel fare l’aiuto federale subordinato l’uso di questi test. Pasang Iklan Gratis

  22. my buddy’s aunt makes $83/hour on the internet. She has been laid off for 5 months but last month her pay was $12861 just working on the internet for a few hours. Read Full Report
    http://www.Rush60.com

  23. Gott im Himmel! The tenured professoriate can’t have this, can they? Actually, I agree with the story. Get the Federal government OUT of our lives.

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