Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by nyvrem, Jun 14, 2017.
That's a 23% increase in only 2 years. Ridiculously absurd.
and then there's this
In reality as a non-profit Harvard could easily make these courses free. Just using some of the 58 million they paid the money managers could do that. Also, the profits from the 35 Billion could fund most students for free. There are zero reasons for schools to get super wealthy like this as non-profits. They are making a huge profit, more than most major corporations will ever make.
To be fair, they also say that 100% of their students can graduate debt-free and 20% of their students pay nothing at all.
$58 million paid to investment advisors. Hey, I would have done it for $79. Everything into tax-free municipals. Oh, and, I guess, plastics.
That is true, but getting into Harvard College is an extremely slim chance. Therefore, these schools try to scoop the money from those who work and/or going to Ivy Leauge Schools through the backdoor.
Offering for free devalues their brand in a BIG way. They have already removed the admissions hurdles, and it's a tiny fraction of what they charge for their other programs.
I've mentioned before that, being from the area, I know many, many people who have taken HES courses, but only a few who have actually graduated with a degree. I think Harvard keeps their brand up by keeping the graduation requirements very difficult, and I see HES as a cash cow for the university.
Well, I've got mixed feelings about it. On the one hand I'd say that with a shmillion dollar endowment they don't really need a cash cow. But on the other hand, with a shmillion dollar endowment they could certainly afford to offer the HES courses more cheaply. Personally I'd like to see the prices go down, not up.
Harvard can be incredibly cheap. I have a friend on the campus police, and the school not only stonewalled them for a raise several years ago, they were actually talking about layoffs.
Then Virginia Tech happened, and suddenly safety was a priority again, but I think Harvard can afford to have the best trained, best equipped, and best paid college police department in the country.
How many people are willing to pay $2700 to put Harvard on their resume? A ton I'd imagine. You don't even need the whole degree. Still, $27,000 buys the master's -- pretty good deal imo.
A ton would pay $50000 or $100000 for a Harvard degree as well. Going up 5000 in two years is ridiculous and I wouldn't pay it. Lots of other options to choose from. I was on the fence when it was $22000 for the degree two years ago and just fell off of it. It's unfortunate too because as already mentioned, it doesn't have to be that high, and the programs themselves are interesting.
I don't think that offering a program for free will damage the brand, provided that the admissions selectivity and academic reputation are there.
It certainly doesn't seem to diminish the brand at the more prestigious doctoral programs, which offer admitted students free tuition plus a stipend (often in the $30-35,000 range) plus health insurance and various other perks like laptops, books, journal subscriptions and conference travel expenses. Some even throw in housing.
If Harvard's reason for operating the HES is to bring Harvard education to the broader community, then charging what the market will bear for the "Harvard" name (and hence pricing themselves beyond many people's reach) would seem to be a self-contradictory strategy.
If you add academic selectivity, it would not be an Extension School, now would it? The goal of both HES and online education has been expanding access; "selectivity" is almost by definition the opposite.
Traditional doctoral programs are entirely different animal. Most of these provide generous financial aid, be it a stipend or an assistantship position - including at Harvard. Usually the more prestigious and selective the program, the better the support package (field specific of course). No one would sign up for exceedingly long programs with uncertain employment prospects otherwise.
We have an obsession in the US with price equaling quality. If it is inexpensive then we think of it as "cheap." Just look at what happened when Georgia Tech offered an inexpensive M.S. and the alumni got upset about the cheapening of their degrees. No change in academic rigor. No change in standards. But people paying less? That makes my paper look cheap.
It isn't just higher ed. It's everywhere in the US. Walk into a wine shop and watch for a guy (or gal) who knows jack about wine cruising for an expensive bottle because they demand "the best." And some of them will choke down the moldies bottle of bourdeux rather than be happy drinkin the Boone Farm they could pick up in the discount rack.
People expect to pay more. People demand to pay more. And the recipients of that money are all too happy to oblige. If they didn't then someone else would take it.
Yes, and HES's program is considerably cheaper than EVERY program they offer.
I've said it before but I'll say it again - you guys live in a bubble (not Neuhaus - just "guys" in general). College, especially graduate education from RA non-profit B&M colleges IS EXPENSIVE.
Harvard College (undergrad, and good luck getting in) Billed at $65,000 PER YEAR, total degree ~$260,000 https://college.harvard.edu/financial-aid/how-aid-works/cost-attendance
Harvard University Extension (undergrad open to anyone who can do the work) Billed at $1550 per 4 credit course. Assuming zero transfer total degree ~$46,000
Harvard Law ~$92,000 PER YEAR Cost of Attendance | Harvard Law School
Harvard Education Master's ~$78,000 PER YEAR https://www.gse.harvard.edu/financialaid/tuition
Harvard University Extension Masters ~$27,000 for the entire degree
and on, and on, and on.
Sorry, but the first extra $27,000 I have sitting around is going straight to HES assuming they'll still have me. If you see this as anything other than a steal, we're on different pages.
Now, someone is about to post about their degree from AnyName U that they got for $12.50 after fully testing out of everything...... but I have a great pair of sneakers - they are no name, and I got them at Walmart for about $15. I love my sneakers, but are they the same as Nike Ultra Boosts? No, they are not. If I want those, I'll have to shell out $180. Now, if I'll settle for the Nike Boost (without the Ultra) I can get by with spending $80. My sons buy Ultra Boosts, I shop at Walmart. See how that works? Various price points to meet customer demand.
The chances of me going to Harvard College --> 0%
The chances of me going to Harvard University Extension --> pretty good.
The chances of me taking 10 Harvard MOOCs ---> 0%
All very good points.
TESU can be a great value. Heck, for me, CTU was an incredible value. However, CTU is no Harvard. TESU is no Harvard. And we can quibble over whether TESU, from an ROI standpoint, offers more value than CTU.
What I do know is that some of my classmates from Scranton, the ones who actually finished their bachelors degrees there, walked away with student loan debt approaching six figures. Those that stayed on for a Masters, especially those that wanted an MBA, ended up being on the hook for over $150k. All for degrees from a school that is virtually unknown outside of Northeastern PA.
My MBA program costs, with all fees and books, around $40,000. That $46k at Harvard doesn't seem so steep when you compare it to other schools with significantly less prestige.
Many doctoral programs offered by the high prestige universities (including Harvard's own) not only offer free tuition, they pay students a salary/stipend to attend and shower them with perks like free laptops and paid travel to conferences. I don't think that largesse impacts perception of their quality. That's because the programs remain very selective, very research-productive, and boast star-studded faculty lists.
I don't think that price was the issue there either. The issue was that the program was/is a selection of 'MOOCs', offered through Udacity. People were concerned that it doesn't appear to offer the same kind of faculty contact and mentoring that the highly-regarded on-campus Georgia Tech CS programs do, though the program claims that interactive elements are built into the program.
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