Few in the United States will dispute the assumption that every high school graduate should be entitled to go to college regardless of financial need. But should everyone be able to go regardless of academic preparedness? Jackson Toby explores the idea that federal financial aid programs, all of which peg student aid to need alone and not to academic performance, are dragging down college admissions and academic standards to the point where America's schools, students, and economy will no longer be globally competitive.
After a half-century of teaching, distinguished educator Jackson Toby concludes that our current system all too often gives both high school and college students the impression that college is an entitlement and not a challenge. The Lowering of Higher Education: Why Student Loans Should Be Based on Credit Worthiness is Toby's unflinching look at this broken system and the ways it can be fixed. This volume documents just how far college admission standards have fallen and measures the cost of remedial programs designed to get underprepared high school students to the level they should have been at in the first place.
Toby is both pointed and frank in his discussion on the issue of grade inflation, which rewards laziness while demoralizing hard-working students. To reverse the national decline of academic standards in American colleges, Toby proposes a radical solution: Let federal student aid be tied to academic performance as well as financial need, incentivizing students to develop serious attitudes and study habits in high school and keep them up in college.
"Mr. Toby's main proposal is to require good grades and test scores from those seeking federal student loans. This requirement, he believes, would improve incentives for academic performance and mitigate the inevitable trade-off between widening access to college and maintaining educational standards."
--Mr. Wildavsky, WSJ.com
"Toby's focus is the United States, but much of what he writes is applicable to countries like Canada that have also taken an open access, universal education approach... Toby takes great care to provide strong arguments supported by empirical evidence, providing readers with a well-documented book."
--James Cote, Canadian Journal of Sociology
"Jackson Toby has hit the jackpot with this incisive critique, showing how lax admission and academic standards of Americans universities have damaged both secondary and higher education. His proposal to tie student loan assistance to academic performance is absolutely spot on."
--Richard Vedder, Director, Center for College Affordability and Productivity
"The distorted roles that college and the college degree have acquired in American life constitute, in my view, our most serious educational problem. But saying what needs to be said requires stepping on toes, and Jackson Toby is not afraid to do so. He brings to this wonderful analysis the erudition of a scholar, the personal experience of a long-time professor, and the clear writing of a journalist. Somehow the issues he raises must become part of a national dialogue."
--Charles Murray, WH Brady Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and author of Real Education: Four Simple Truths for Bringing America's Schools Back to Reality
"With the authority of a lifetime devoted to college teaching, Jackson Toby tells hard and painful truths that most professors would prefer to keep hidden. There are too many students in American colleges today; many of them are under-prepared, don't want to study, can't do the work, bu
Number Of Pages: 230
Published: 15th March 2012
Publisher: Transaction Publishers
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.2
Weight (kg): 0.325