Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by Kizmet, Mar 15, 2016.
Someone takes a shot at the HLC
Accredited by Chewbacca | The College Scoop
"Let the Wookie accredit." (Han Solo?)
I'm off to a different franchise, then. What agency accredits Starfleet Academy?
That diploma mill? I saw a documentary on a guy--Kirk or something like that--who cheated on a test and got promoted to captain!
This Kirk? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Kirk_diploma_mills
Not him? Well, you have to admit that despite any early slips, e.g. that alleged cheating on a Starfleet test, Kirk-alias-Shatner-alias-Hooker-alias-Crane has made some pretty good entertainment and done all right for himself. :smile:
Oh, better than that. The Tek War books were a hit (possibly ghosted!). And he got in on the ground floor (with an equity position) in Priceline, which has made him fabulously wealthy in return for his full-throated endorsement. This is a guy who slept in his car for a bit after the divorce and the cancellation of Star Trek. Nice comeback.
You guys are off-topic. Here's the goods
University - Wookieepedia - Wikia
Right. Like there was a topic.
My first reaction to the article was "This is crap." The author is basically saying that HLC is an accreditation mill. It's true that HLC does accredit "many" for-profit schools. They also happen to accredit "many" non-profit and public schools which happen to be situated in the north central region. And while the AIU thing is a weak attempt to prove that HLC is a joke compared to the other regional accreditors, the fact remains that those other accreditors also accredit for-profit schools. So I think it's odd to claim it's a safe haven.
But then I mulled it over and I thought how the membership model of accrediting agencies does raise a few questions. Does the company a university keeps through their mutual inclusion in a particular accrediting agency mean anything?
Look at how badly some people looked at Marconi University just because their stateside accreditor is ACICS even though they are fully recognized in Italy.
Does Colorado State heavily resent sharing part of a name and an accrediting body with Colorado Technical? Does the University of Chicago sit up at night wishing the University of Phoenix and Everest would stop tainting their accreditor?
I doubt it. I think that there are two (major) camps: schools that have amazing reputations on their own merits and schools whose major achievement is accreditation.
What would happen if Cornell and Columbia both dropped their RA and opted for NYSBOR accreditation? (Note: Cornell used to hold it and regularly hires professors with PhDs from the NYSBOR accredited Rockefeller University).
What would happen if all of the Ivys just dropped their accreditation and said "Screw it, we don't need Title IV funds and we're tired of paying the accreditors." Would people stop going? Would those degrees become worthless? Or would the reputations transcend the accreditation?
I think people went a very long time without thinking about accreditation. Now they're thinking about what it actually means. For years accreditation was an "easy" way to validate legitimacy. But that doesn't mean it is the best system. I don't know if there is enough anger and outrage to actually force a change. But if hordes of people can rally behind a guy like Trump I'm sure they could rally behind a model where accreditation changed drastically, disappeared completely, and a new system, for better or worse, emerges in its place.
It's just another irresponsibly written article written by someone who doesn't understand the reality that there are plenty of non-profit schools behaving badly in many of the same ways. And you can tell the agenda by how the word "For-Profit" was placed along with the tired "they're getting Federal Financial Aid funds!" rhetoric as if non-profits don't get them, smh.
The HLC is not perfect, no regionally accreditation body is. All accreditors make mistakes, they're run by humans after all. But this witch hunt of the For-Profit sector has just gone too far. I saw the Dan Rather report on this once and said "Not you, too, Dan!?!?!"
It's obvious that a power structure not benefiting from For-Profit schools wants them gone and therefore out of competition.
I'm all about conspiracy theories but this might be a bit of an overreach. I don't know that there's any evidence that there is some quiet, cooperative effort by a nefarious "power structure" to eliminate for-profit schools. It's more reasonable to suppose that there are a lot of lazy journalists who are willing to write a retread article that casts aspersions somewhat indiscriminately.
Considering the factions who own major media and have control over what gets pressed and what doesn't, I don't think it's a conspiracy at all, it's simply business as usual in that industry. If the leadership in that industry as a whole didn't want this to become the overly-inflated thing it's become, it certainly wouldn't have.
You mean the scumbags that own major media.
I'll never forget CNN faking those scenes during the first Gulf war. Fox News claiming to confirm the finding of WMD's. The lies media in general told to reshape the Pat Tillman situation, and on and on, and it's no coincidence how they always all seem to join in with agreement on these lies.
The major media and their agendas have about as much credibility with me as a twitching meth head.
Without subsidy, education is a very expensive endeavor. And the margins are pretty terrible. It takes seven figures just to enter into the business and the regulatory environment is a nightmare. If I were handed a few million dollars and given the opportunity to invest it I think sinking the cash into a sandwich shop (or even a chain of them) would be a safer bet with far less headache.
Public schools subsidize their education through the government allocating funds to them. Private non-profits subsidize education through philanthropy and investment income on endowments. All of this is in addition to the Title IV funds that accreditation allows them to access.
For-profit schools and smaller private non-profit schools are in a very similar boat; they are keeping themselves afloat with tuition and Title IV funds only. Smaller schools with tiny endowments don't have regular income or, more likely, have so little income from the endowment that it's just a drop in the bucket of expenses that keep the lights on.
Those small non-profit schools aren't competing with for-profit schools, for the most part. They aren't attracting, or attempting to attract, working adults and veterans. They are typically after traditional students who fall in love with their picturesque campus and their low faculty to student ratios. Those small non-profit schools are competing with the cheaper public schools and the equally (or less) expensive large non-profit schools.
I've cited before the fact that it is twice as expensive to attend Ithaca College than it is to attend one of the land grant colleges at Cornell University. If you go to one of Cornell's endowed colleges the price is pretty comparable. I'm sure if we looped the University of Phoenix into the mix we'd see that their price was also similar for the same course of study. And if we really put our effort into it, I'm sure we could find a small non-profit school with absolutely zero name recognition where the tuition is just as high as all three places.
The tiny colleges can't push the elites of the world out of the mix. But they can advocate to shut down the Universities of Phoenix of the world. And with public sentiment against the for-profits, it's the perfect time to strike. But the reality is if we stopped allowing for-profits to receive Title IV funds tomorrow, who is the next likely public enemy?
Who are they going to blame when, after the fall of the for-profits (or, at least the ones that rely on Title IV funds to stay afloat), students are still un or underemployed?
The next group on the chopping block are the small non-profit schools who charge Ivy League prices for a degree that is unrecognizable to potential employers and saddle the users in debt. If you can afford to send your special little snowflake to special snowflake college, that's your business. But for generations we've pushed this narrative that if poor, working class and middle class families send their kids to these types of places they'll come out bigger, better and financially independent.
Rather than say "Hey, we need more plumbers and electricians and a few less people with degrees in gender studies" we've decided that we need a scapegoat. It can't possibly be the faults of the parents and students who take out gobs of debt for degrees with no relevant career path. Nope, there must be an evil school making bad things happen. Rather than ceasing our deprecating views of the skilled trades and our romanticized sales pitch of a "liberal arts education" we've decided that the problem must logically be that we need more Master's degrees. Perhaps another doctorate or two. Meanwhile, the people driving trucks, fixing toilets, working as locksmiths and building our homes have steady jobs, good middle class pay and likely far less student loan debt than the typical college graduate even if they attended a for-profit trade school.
Indeed, as the saying goes, never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.
I used to write a blog at a different education site, and the prevalence of lazy education journalism made the job very easy. All I had to do for the day was find yet another lazily written article about higher education or distance learning, quote its stupid bits, and explain why it was wrong. That's not all I ever did, but it was a mainstay because there's so just much oversimplification and outright misinformation being relentlessly produced out there.
It's easy to explain away any with wide suspicion by calling it a conspiracy because it presses the button of naiveté that the average person has about these things, which is, that they never want to believe that our scared institutions are doing anything other than looking out for the public's best interests, nevermind the countless times in which we can show factually that the media has done the total opposite--and purposely--like the few instances I mentioned before.
To say that all of these things happen simply because of "lazy journalism"--by thousands upon thousands of journalists and media outlets mind you--is a far bigger reach and definitely far more unlikely. After all, that's pretty much saying the industry as a whole is made up mostly of lazy journalists when they latch on to current stories and write their own. I don't buy that.
No, instead, I think the job is to report what's current and relevant, and those in charge of those media outlets decide how far that will go. When they want the agenda to have legs they allow it to have legs. When they don't, they reject it and shift focus to something else.
No rational person can look at how major media overall behaves with stories and say they don't press agendas, which includes creating people & things into heroes and villains which shape public opinion rather than simply reporting the facts as they are. A single journalist who isn't independent has no real power. He/she can write a story and get it approved, maybe thousands of stories, but make no mistake about it; whomever owns that media outlet can/will/does put the breaks on whatever that journalist offers up whenever they want and there is nothing he/she will be able to do about it other than quit and explode about it someplace online later (which has happened a number of times), or accept it, stay in the job, and move on to something else.
When it comes to agendas, passive allowance is how many things are shaped by media, not indifference.
When you go back to the source of the original article, ChicagoNow, you see that it's a blog that also has a front page article on shrimp gumbo and "National Clean Out Your Closets Week." We're not talking about the NY Times here. This is just some blogger, maybe not even a journalist who in all likelihood rehashed someone else's stuff in order to fill some space and get a by line.
I was around for the ridiculous MOOC media hype cycle, and I'm very comfortable with the idea that journalists have a herd mentality and glom onto oversimplifications as a result. The most charitable I'm willing to be is that it's not laziness so much as cash strapped media outlets relying on inexperienced people and overworking them. That said, however, just because I think there's a lot out there that's poor quality doesn't mean I think there's nothing that's good quality.
Scared, lol? Did you mean to write 'sacred'?
How DARE you correct me in public!
Well, Ted Cruz says he's going to abolish the IRS so I suppose that could make them a scared institution
(as if he has a chance of winning).
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