Reforming Higher Education: Observations and Comments of an Educator


While the costs of getting higher education have immensely gone up, its quality and effectiveness has greatly diminished as well. Prof. Abraham H. Miller, emeritus professor of political science at the University of Cincinnati offered practical solutions to the problem and moving higher education reform forward.

In one of our recent articles we came upon the Bennett Hypothesis in which former Education Secretary Dr. William J. Bennett predicted the rising costs of higher education back in 1987.

As early as the 1990's there have been moved in reforming universities and higher education institutions. One study suggested having policy reforms and to manage education and increase opportunities for students.

Dr. Miller's article which appeared on the American Thinker pointed to today;s college degrees being nothing but a hoax because graduates are left deep in student debts with very little marketable skills and competencies that does not guarantee them any reasonable return on the amount they invested in getting a college degree.

This lack also makes it difficult for these degree holders to repay their debt. To date there are 44 million student debt borrowers and this translates to about $1.3 trillion in student loan debts.

What Dr. Miller is proposing is to provide real education in the sense that students will not be fully occupied with reading books all the time but that they have enough time to think in abstract concepts and process it in a way that learners get to apply deductive and inductive reasoning. He believes that higher education is about the scientific process and the ability to learn knowledge and not merely be taught and fed with information.

Further that the debt is unnecessary together with the fancy dorms and campus residences. Dr. Miller pointed back that long before the Internet, there was distance learning - and this is older than most home study programs we have. Distance learning have been used since the 19th century.

The government could focus its resources and work with higher learning institutions and create courses that students can take using the Internet. This will eliminate the need for students to pay for very high tuition fees and pay rent for their housing while in college. This will also eliminate miscellaneous fees and cut down school's expenses on faculty payroll.

By using technology, schools can work with the best educators and most distinguished professors and their programs can reach a far greater number in a semester using the Internet compared to our brick and mortar system right now.

Local libraries as well as school libraries can be used not just for research but for testing purposes as well and the laboratories can still be used while there are no available computer simulations for students to use.

While these suggestions mean well and quite largely unorthodox, considering the ongoing student debt crisis, this actually makes sense.

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