Kauffman Foundation has issued a new report, College 2.0: An Entrepreneurial Approach to Reforming Higher Education.” The report is based on a retreat attended by 30 leading higher thinkers. (Maybe one day I’ll attend such an event, hah!). From the Kauffman Website (where you can download the report):
“U.S. higher education today faces a host of problems from rising costs and dismaying dropout rates to low productivity and failure to effectively serve nontraditional students,” said Ben Wildavsky, Kauffman Foundation senior scholar for research and policy and co-organizer of the retreat. “We see an urgent need to not just reform, but rethink, how colleges and universities deliver education to enhance quality, access, and graduates’ success in the workforce.”
“College 2.0” showcases ambitious ideas for reinventing higher education, focused on making better use of technology, developing a culture of measurement and performance incentives, and creating smarter regulation. Recommended actions fell into six broad categories, including:
Tackle campus-level obstacles to innovation.
Faculty should be treated as enablers of innovation and provided incentives such as research funds to encourage development of innovative teaching models. Likewise, state policymakers should give colleges incentives to innovate by offering higher levels of funding to institutions with better student outcomes (and, presumably, more effective curriculum and teaching).
Accreditation should place the fewest possible restrictions on both new and existing providers to encourage innovation. It should focus much less on inputs and much more on outcome measures, such as student performance and loan default rates. Online learning should be largely deregulated as long as minimum course-level outcomes are specified.
I’ve downloaded the report and hope to read it this weekend. We’ll see how that turns out. Anyone who gets to it let us know what in there.