College funding: Does it make sense to fund campuses based on whether students earn their degrees?

Georgia will now fund colleges based on completion rates rather than enrollment rates.  (AJC/file photo)

Georgia will now fund colleges based on completion rates rather than enrollment rates. (AJC/file photo)

Reflecting the national trend to outcomes-based education funding, Georgia’s public colleges will now earn dollars based on how many students earn diplomas rather than how many enroll.

Tennessee has led the nation in this effort, eliminating enrollment as a funding criteria for its public colleges. (For a story on the Tennessee funding formula and how it works, go here.)

To look at Tennessee’s actual program, go to this state presentation. This Tennessee Higher Education Commission presentation includes actual data for colleges and details the weighting formula.

“The outcomes-based funding formula bases the entire institutional allocation of state appropriations on the basis of outcomes including degree production, research funding and graduation rates at universities, and student remediation, job placements, student transfer and associates degrees at community colleges,” according to the commission.

I attended a presentation last year on the Tennessee formula where I learned that all state funding is back up for grabs every year. No institution is entitled to any minimal level of appropriation based on prior-year funding.  State appropriations have to be earned anew each year. The goal was to to stop rewarding campuses  for enrollment growth — for getting students in the door — and reward them instead for getting students out the door with degrees.

The Complete College Tennessee Act was only passed in 2010 so it is too early to assess its impact on grad rates but colleges are taking student advisement more seriously. Here is a PolitiFact Tennessee review of the changes already visible on Tennessee campuses.

And, finally here is a critique of the Tennessee formula in which a University of Tennessee professor writes:

Ultimately, it is students who earn degrees, and therefore I believe that the source of Tennessee’s problems with graduation and retention rates lie largely in the student’s own individual histories – the personal and financial obstacles that they face, and their lack of adequate academic preparation for college level work.  Although we may have only limited influence on the former, we can address the preparation of students en masse if we can generate a cultural shift in our state. We must create an “education culture,” where educational achievement is given the highest priority at every level of society, from teachers and students to parents and, yes, political leaders.  If political leaders wish to contribute to the creation of such a culture, they must, as the saying goes, “put their money where their mouth is,” and increase educational investment across the board in our state.

Now, Georgia is following Tennessee’s lead.

According to the AJC:

A commission appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal approved a new formula Wednesday that links the state funding colleges receive to their improving student success and the number of degrees or certificates awarded. The plan, which won’t go into effect for a couple of years, represents a drastic shift from the current system that focuses on enrollment and how many credits students take, with little attention paid to whether they ever graduate.

The new formula is one of a series of steps Georgia is taking that acknowledges the state’s economic future depends on colleges producing a more skilled workforce to attract and keep employers. The formula is “important to the future direction of our state, ” Deal told the commission. “This actually is probably one of the most important final pieces in the puzzle.” Deal will officially receive the formula report before the end of the year, and the change does not require approval from the state Legislature.

The 2015 fiscal year allotment will provide a base funding moving forward, said Kristin Bernhard, Deal’s education policy adviser. Starting with the 2016 fiscal year, colleges would earn or lose money based on whether they improve.  So far, Tennessee is the only state where 100 percent of public college funding is tied to outcomes. Nearly a dozen states are working on plans to tie at least some portion, if not all, of college funding to performance goals.

Georgia’s new formula ties funding to how well students progress through college and the number of degrees awarded. While progression is rewarded, the formula focuses on “outcomes, ” such as the number of certificates awarded by technical colleges and the number bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees awarded by research universities such as the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech.

Colleges can receive extra money if they succeed with students who are known to struggle the most in school. This incentive money is tied to adult learners, who are 25 or older, and low-income students, as measured by those who receive the federal Pell Grant. Schools may also be rewarded for how well they meet certain initiatives that help Georgia’s workforce needs. Specifics are still being determined, but the technical colleges may want to consider work placement, while universities may focus on the number of science, math, technology and engineering graduates, Bernhard said.

The formula will determine how much money the state allocates to the two systems. The systems will still decide how to divvy up that lump sum among their colleges. Georgia spends about 11 percent of its state budget on public colleges, but only 44 percent of students attending a public four-year college graduate in six years. Projections show that by 2020 about 60 percent of jobs will require education after high school, although only 42 percent of Georgians meet that standard.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

110 comments Add your comment

Peter Smagorinsky

December 13th, 2012
11:49 am

This law will punish universities whose students lack the money to dedicate themselves entirely to school for a concentrated period of time. A major reason people stop attending school is that they can’t afford tuition in conjunction with the need to spend time earning. So, UGA and Georgia Tech should look as though they’re doing a better job than other universities in the system, because the students tend to be relatively affluent to begin with, and perhaps come with HOPE or other assistance. But universities that serve other demographics enroll people who are less financially stable, and more likely need to work at the expense of academics. Does that mean they’re doing a better job of retention? Only if you ignore the REASONS that people do and do not persist in pursuit of their degrees.

Attentive Parent/Invisible Serfs Collar

December 13th, 2012
12:16 pm

This simply encourages the very hungry higher ed sector, especially administration, to adopt the criteria of the Lumina Foundation’s Diploma Qualifications Profile to move toward Equity in Credentials. But it lessens the value of everyone’s degree in the process. I wrote about it here this summer. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/credential-inflation-how-reforming-higher-ed-with-learner-outcomes-can-damage-all-degrees/

Universities will make the changes needed to keep their funding but students will be hurt. Degrees without marketable knowledge and skills create expectations that cannot be met. In fact that reality was a huge fuse in the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution in Russia and in what happened in Eqypt over the last few years. A UNESCO report from the early 70s I read a few days ago talked about how socially incendiary such degrees can become.

Although UNESCO saw it as a feature not a bug. What has happened in other countries ahead of the US in the Equity of Credentials and Qualifications Frameworks that then regulate employers is that it creates a degree frenzy trying to distinguish yourself. Suddenly all must get masters. Again lucrative for higher ed institutions but without genuine value being necessarily added.

Higher ed all over the world seems to want a perpetual annuity from anyone who wants gainful employment to come in regularly over their life and pay up for the next magic credential.

Maureen-I know you admire Anthony Carnevale’s work but it strikes me as just an excuse to destroy what does work in higher ed in terms of its practical effects.

Old Physics Teacher

December 13th, 2012
12:22 pm

This is just Great! Thank you, Governor and the rest of the politicians! You are now doing to the universities what you did to K-12 education! Every nation on the planet sends their very best to the USA to learn from our universities because these university provide the best instruction in the world!

With this new idiocy, the Universities will have two options to “win:” a) Do NOT ADMIT anyone who cannot, ABSOLUTELY CANNOT, earn a degree. SAT entrance scores must be > 1900 and GPA >3.8, and instructors will have to keep track of where the students are and prevent them from partying rather than studying. Just a great Idea! Ranks right up there with the Edsel and new Coke!

or b) keep the same entrance requirements and dilute the instruction until a reasonably smart 13 year-old could pass the exams. Then Wall-mart would have to give an employment test to college graduates to see if they were qualified to run a cash register.

To paraphrase Pogo, “We have met the enemy, and it is our politicians!”

Prof

December 13th, 2012
12:29 pm

In answer to your question, Maureen, yes.

You make good points, Peter Smagorinsky, and you left out the problem that this six-year rate really means six years from the one institution, so that its transfer students won’t count for the institution.

But over several decades, I have seen many pernicious effects of the state’s policy that funding follows the school’s enrollment rates. Students needing remediation are accepted who really aren’t ready for college, so that as Georgia’s K-12 education has been dumbed down over the last ten years so have the admission standards of Georgia’s colleges and universities.

Then there is the corresponding grade inflation as these remedial students on whom the school’s funding to an extent depends are encouraged to stay in school, and they pressure professors for higher grades. I am so tired of students pleading that my giving them a well-deserved C will mean they’ll lose their HOPE scholarship!

It also has meant that everyone seems to game the system to keep students in school and the overall enrollments high. As the professor teaching the end-result, I have found it more and more difficult to observe high classroom and grading standards.

No, my administration may not be happy about the legislature’s decision, but this faculty member definitely is.

Hall Mom

December 13th, 2012
12:39 pm

I can see two possible trends:

1) Grade inflation, which will then make a Georgia college education almost meaningless
2) Colleges will become so selective that none but the traditional student will be admitted

mammap

December 13th, 2012
12:54 pm

Has it occurred to anyone that many students who are attending college shouldn’t be there in the first place? Think of all of the Hope funding wasted because of the scores of students who flunked out. We should be focused on providing incentives to students who are capable and who go in to the STEM fields. Otherwise, we will continue heading toward the bottom compared to many other countries.

MANGLER

December 13th, 2012
12:57 pm

So in order to get funding, colleges will have to graduate more students? Yeah, can’t imagine anything fishy happening there.
I have been contemplating returning to school to further things along. However, this decision will make me seriously have to consider whether it would mean anything besides some debt.

AlreadySheared

December 13th, 2012
1:15 pm

At first glance, this appears to be another potshot taken by the state’s good ol’ boys at Georgia Tech, which is by many measures the best public college in the state and one of the best in the country. It is, however, a real booger to get through, and many do not.

As another local educational functionary put it:”Isolated pockets of excellence are unacceptable.”

indigo

December 13th, 2012
1:16 pm

Many in America have yet to learn that college is not for everyone. A goodly number of high school graduates would fare much better by going to a trade school. Additionally, it seems that graduates in the Humanities are going to find it increasingly difficult to find jobs in a society that is becomming more and more technical every year.

What's Best for Kids???

December 13th, 2012
1:20 pm

This will make the paper that the degree is printed on completely worthless.
Goes back to k-12. Who cares if the kids learned anything? Are they happy? Did they get an A?

Old Physics Teacher

December 13th, 2012
1:23 pm

Prof,

Have you considered the possibility that students whine to you because it’s successful? Freshman Chem at Georgia has historically flunked 50% of the students in the introductory course. They’ve whined and whined and whined. Every time the Freshman Coordinator gets replaced (retirement or accepting a more lucrative position) the students are convinced their parents whining to the Regents is why he “got fired,” and now the course will be easier. It never is because the Chem professors pay no attention to the whining. Now, the Dean will have a vested interest in keeping students “on tract” to graduate. That will be passed down to the non-tenured faculty to threaten them with. The end result “is left as an exercise for the …prof.”

Just Sayin.....

December 13th, 2012
1:43 pm

Everyone else has already pointed out what is wrong with results based funding in higher education.

You get the activity that you make rules for. For outcome based funding, colleges will either demand better students or lower standards so that anyone can pass. There is no middle ground! Is this REALLY what we want from colleges and universities?

Another view

December 13th, 2012
1:49 pm

“I can see two possible trends:
1) Grade inflation, which will then make a Georgia college education almost meaningless
2) Colleges will become so selective that none but the traditional student will be admitted”

Colleges will not become more selective, because as the article points out, the goal is to graduate MORE students, and you cannot graduate more students by limiting the student population. Instead, and I can tell you this as a professor currently working in a USG university, standards will be dramatically lowered. Already my World History to 1500 course will no longer have a writing component or exams. Instead, all student assessment will starting in January be nothing more than weekly online multiple choice quizzes that they can retake as many times as they want to improve their grade. This will be open book, multiple choice, and limited to five question per week. Enjoy your educated citizenry Georgia.

Another view

December 13th, 2012
1:52 pm

@Old Physics Teacher. “Freshman Chem at Georgia has historically flunked 50% of the students in the introductory course.” Not anymore. Expect a 90% passing rate.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
1:55 pm

@ Old Physics Teacher, December 13th, 1:23 pm.

Well, It isn’t successful with me. It helps to be a tenured Full Professor, I guess.

There aren’t very many untenured faculty, since there has been a hiring/salary freeze since 2008 throughout the USG system. And also…were you a HS Physics teacher?…. I do think that sort of grade pressuring is a myth at the University level. Deans just aren’t like principals.

Progressive Humanist

December 13th, 2012
1:56 pm

This will lead to grade inflation and a lowering of standards. If professors assign too many C’s, D’s (without even considering F’s), they might not have a job the next year because the funding for their position may disappear. So they will assign even more A’s and B’s. It won’t take students long to figure out that they don’t have to do much work to get those A’s and B’s and they’ll coast, knowing that they’ll get a decent grade regardless. Professors will then continue to give good grades for poorer and poorer work. Rigor will dissipate and graduates will have learned less. Measures should be put in place to make college more rigorous, not less.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
2:02 pm

@ MANGLER. It could also mean that your classmates would be of a higher caliber.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
2:08 pm

@ Progressive Humanist. And just how would that work with tenured faculty? Also, “funding for positions” doesn’t disappear so easily, for then the entire “line” would disappear; and believe me, department chairs are going to fight that.

C’mon, y’all–don’t assume that higher education works like K-12 education does. Tenured professors are notoriously a feisty, independent lot who don’t relish being told what to do by administrators (”the dark side”).

Another view

December 13th, 2012
2:08 pm

@Progressive Humanist. I will never give a grade below a C in my classes with this formula. There is your answer. Also, the long-term move will be this. In five or six years you will see the USG come up with standardized testing for CORE Areas A-E based on multiple choice tests. There will now be CRCT exams at the college level to compensate for the 5-6 years of faculty just passing students to keep funding. When this is done, you will then have college designed around teaching to a test. That worked real well in Atlanta Public Schools. The rest of the country will know this, and your students will not be hired.

Another view

December 13th, 2012
2:10 pm

@Prof. My tenure and funding at CSU is tied to RPG. What do you think I will do?

Progressive Humanist

December 13th, 2012
2:20 pm

Prof- Don’t assume you’re the only professor here. I’m a tenure track prof at a USG university and I know how department heads fight for the entire line. We had someone leave this year and we’re shuffling positions around so that it won’t look like we don’t need the position (we do). But if funding is not there positions will disappear, and this formula is designed to ensure that funding will be reduced when students are not successful. So there will be increased pressure to ensure that students appear successful even if they aren’t by our current standards.

Attentive Parent/Invisible Serfs Collar

December 13th, 2012
2:26 pm

Prof- Here is a post explaining how the Lumina DQP I mentioned above will work. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/constructing-an-alternative-vision-of-either-the-natural-or-human-world-as-the-basis-for-a-college-degree/

Since USG Vice Chancellor Lynne Weisenbach had Lumina officials at the November 2011 ceremony announcing reforming USG to get graduation rates up, this is coming.

Moreover, SACS is the enforcer for this and the transformed vision for higher ed laid out in the January 2012 The Crucible Moment report. They get to threaten colleges and universities with loss of participation in the federal student loan program if their demands are not met. And you thought they bossed around school boards. Or allowed the Supers to.

Also look into what is called the Bologna Process and its Social Dimensions caveat. Arne Duncan has expressly mentioned the US wants to adhere to these as well.

Equity in Credentials despite backgrounds means little transmission of knowledge. We are fast becoming a nation where K-12 and higher ed cost more than the education the accreditors will allow them to provide to students. Otherwise knowledge interferes with equal results.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
2:28 pm

@ Another View. Ah. Yes. Columbus State University is a small USG school. But if your tenure and funding is tied to the RPG, then it must be that it was tied to your grades and student evaluation ratings before, right? For only at a teaching-priority school could your statement be true. So you will probably do just what you would have done before this change in the funding formula came about: you’ll give good grades to assure that you get tenure and funding. It seems to me that the only difference is that the source of the pressure has changed for you…BOTH of which I deplore.

But your incoming freshmen should be better than they were before.

Bhorsoft

December 13th, 2012
2:33 pm

Sounds good on the surface, but will lead to the wrong behaviors in practice. I’m reminded of the old Dilbert cartoon where the pointy-haired managers says to his team, “I’ll pay $10 for every bug found.” Wally the programmer then says, “I’m going to write me a new minivan!”

I see the 4 year degree that usually takes 5 years going down to a 3 year degree that my dog could earn.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
2:41 pm

@ Progressive Humanist. I know there are many other professors on this blog, in varying situations. But under the old funding formula, the same situation of position-shuffling happened when there was a long-term pattern of low course enrollments for the line. Then, the “hook” was that continued student enrollment was the goal. Now it will be the student 6-year graduation rate.

These problems will not be new with the change in funding formula.

I myself think that this change will mean that schools will tend to accept only students they expect to graduate in 6 years. But I don’t see that as a bad thing. Teach remedial students at the upper-division level long enough, and you’ll see what I mean.

beteachin

December 13th, 2012
2:43 pm

Hmmmm. First thought: Now can we finally get the right changes made to HOPE? Since graduation rate is now more important that overall enrollment, then why should we award HOPE to students who have no chance of graduating? (As we all know, high school grades are a moving target from teacher to teacher and school to school.) Therefore, why not give the scholarship as a reward for first year college success instead of basing the award on high school grades? After successfully completing the freshman year with a B average, the student automatically gains HOPE for the sophomore year and so on. Upon graduation, the student could be granted a lump sum in the amount they would have received as a freshman. If they do not graduate, the fees for less-than-HOPE-worthy coursework should not, of course, be reimbursed.
Second thought: Will colleges be forced to graduate more people (dumb it down?) in order to keep the funding? Yep. Sadly so.

Progressive Humanist

December 13th, 2012
2:57 pm

Prof,

And how do we ensure a high 6-year graduation rate (and continuous funding)? We make sure that students get passing grades, high ones. And if funding is dependent upon that, then they’ll get high grades regardless of other considerations such as the level of achievement they’ve shown.

While raising entrance requirements sounds like a logical solution, I work at one of the more difficult public universities for freshmen to be accepted to, as measured by GPA and SAT scores, so that’s not much of an option for us. We’re already near the top in terms of those criteria, and we don’t have many students who require remediation coming in.

HS Public Teacher

December 13th, 2012
2:58 pm

I see this as major trouble.

If funding is based on number of degrees (or percentage of degrees), then doesn’t this just mean an incentive for colleges to hand out degrees freely like toilet paper?

What about quality of education? Does Georgia not care about this any more for higher ed?

The more difficult degree programs of course have a higher percentage of failures. Is Georgia trying to shift all colleges to only offer the easier degrees?

I just don’t understand.

HS Public Teacher

December 13th, 2012
3:00 pm

I think that I will open a Georgia college and accept anyone. I will admit anyone that wants to attend – no entrance requirement at all. As long as they pay their tuition and fees bill every semester, they will earn a piece of paper (degree) at the end of four years.

Problem solved!

Ole Guy

December 13th, 2012
3:03 pm

Pete, you seem to take a somewhat…”delicate”…view on (what you call) the major cause behind college dropouts. While money issues lie behind many of our decisions in life, it is the truly unprepared (in undelicate terms, call em’ stupid) who invite woe upon themselves. If one were to purchase a house, car, or any hi-dollar product/service, and later find themselves having to return these items due to a (supposedly unforseen) lack of funding, just where do you think the initial problem may lie? Could it be that sudden tradegy which life seems to cast in our direction at most-inopportune times? Probably, but certainly not the vast numbers of kids who don’t graduate because they simply cannot handle any academic workload beyond 8th grade.

Let’s not continue, folks, on this self-delusional path toward answering that big question…”Why can’t my little Johnny reed, rat, and do rithmitic”? None of these generational tragedys…such as masses of kids being steeped in the kettles of lifetime failures…will ever simply go away until those hard…very hard…decisions are made to get serious about education.

If there are any confusions over these generalities…well, that’s just too gd bad. I’ve been over these issues too many times; far too many out there seem to reject any suggestion that the educational system, in its entirety, can and must return to the old ways…the methodologies which enabled earlier generations to grow and to actually contribute to the relentless march of civilization.

As to the initial question…should college funding be based on rates of graduation…why the hell not? Is college a place where one might “find” one’s self”? During the Vietnam War years, college, for many, was a place to “sit out the Draft”; to hide within the world of academe. Only problem, for these folks, was (the government, for once, actually did something right) they had to maintain a decent gpa; they had to study and apply themselves, if for no other reason, to stay out of the Draft (Selective Service was extremely adept at finding those who failed in this endeavour)

ONCE AGAIN, let’s knock it off with this incessant attempt at trying to validate generational failure. Kids don’t drop out because…OOPS…they ran outa dough. THEY FAIL BECAUSE THEY FAILED TO PLAN’, something which the public school system (and the adults who are products of the very same systems) never DEMANDED.

Bhorsoft

December 13th, 2012
3:09 pm

I see lots more business and marketing majors and a decline in STEM majors.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
3:14 pm

@ Progressive Humanist. I see your point. But there aren’t that many Georgia schools in that situation (unfortunately).

Prof

December 13th, 2012
3:22 pm

I also think that this funding change is not due so much to sinister plots to water down Georgia higher education and the worth of its degrees, but is part of that national trend of “outcomes-based education,” as Maureen put it. That in turn, I do think, is due to the student loan crisis fast approaching where students have over-extended themselves with higher education loans and the taxpayers wind up paying for it.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
3:33 pm

That is, if the student can’t graduate in 6 years, then he/she shouldn’t be making long-term educational loans that the taxpayers underwrite. It’s rather like the change in the home mortgage market, with the newly stringent borrowing rules resulting from the 2008 collapse of the market that was due to risky loans to unqualified borrowers.

Old Physics Teacher

December 13th, 2012
5:33 pm

Prof,

I’ve talked to many tenured professors on many different campuses. Most all of the liberal arts faculty agreed with you. However the ones that do mathematics and the business school faculty understand what’s actually going to happen.

You guys keep complaining about the students we send you. *We* don’t send you any students. YOUR admissions department accepts them. AND THEY ARE GOING TO BE ACCEPTING MORE AND MORE OF THEM Irrespective of what you want them to do! Your tenured positions are only tenured as long as there is funding for them. When your pay is dependent on how many students are in your class and how many of them pass, you’re going to singing a different tune. You are about to see the end of your “academic freedom.” Now you may retire before it actually gets to you, but rest assured the garbage the legislatures of each state AND the federal government have stuck us lowly non-tenured high school teachers is heading your way and your smugness is not going to prevent them from bending you over and kicking you where it hurts the most. Your best tactic is to convince the ID-ten-Ts at the legislature to mind their own business or you’re about to become their next scapegoat.

Veritus

December 13th, 2012
5:35 pm

What will end up happening is both: grade inflation and an increase in selectivity.

I anticipate that UGA and GT will greatly benefit from this change. UGA and GT continue to become more selective attracting only the best and brightest. UGA’s new push to become a premier research university will only polarize the differences between UGA/GT and…well, everyone else.

I think GT and UGA will not experience much grade inflation. Both schools, especially Georgia Tech, have very difficult curriculum – especially for the sciences.

Unfortunately, everyone who CAN’T get into these schools will suffer grade inflation. The goal will be quantity, not quality. Those STEM students won’t be able to compete with students at GT or UGA. The pre-health students will do poorly on standardized tests such as the MCAT and DAT. Students will graduate with less real world application and skill needed to be successful. It’s a shame.

I completely agree that we need to stop with the notion that everyone needs to go to college. Some people ARE NOT college-ready students and likely will never be. Most people just need a trade. If only our flagship universities could open a strong trade school component. I doubt that will happen because of the increasing influence of prestige and pedigree in workforce(not just business and law anymore. The Chronicle of Higher Education published an interesting article on this last week)

Now, it’s not all doom-and-gloom. What could also happen is discouragement of those who AREN’T college ready and don’t need to attending college. We’ll get more technical school grads.

People who comment on these articles are so cynical. I hope they’re not representative of the population at large.

I don’t see why everyone is so focused on graduation rates. Co-ops, internships, study abroad, part-time study and financial issues may prevent a traditional 4-year graduation rate.

AthensResident

December 13th, 2012
6:05 pm

Enough yammering on the Internet. Write your state legislator or legislator-elect and tell them why the graduation-only approach to funding is bad for students, parents, industry, and the academy. If you have time to post here, you have time to write a letter – and invite your colleagues to do the same.

Attentive Parent/Invisible Serfs Collar

December 13th, 2012
6:10 pm

Profiif you do not think there is a serious plot to water down higher ed then you haven’t read the reports I mentioned or what AACU has been publishing since at least 1995.

If a have a theory on how things fit, I look for proof.

If I say or imply there’s a plot. I have open declarations in people’s own words on intentions and hoped for consequences.

Please remember that what is going on in education is linked tight to changing the US and other countries to a government planned economy based on Green Energy or Low Carbon as the current name goes. In this scenario people hope to get jobs via fiat.

Every bit of economics I know says this is a disastrous scenario being spun but education is an intricate part of a much broader planned Transformation. I get to say that sort of thing as long as I have the blueprints to back it up.

bootney farnsworth

December 13th, 2012
6:20 pm

if you wanna crash the system, then sure.

USG schools are already forced to deal with being funded based on enrollment 2-3 years past. and that the lions share of funding will go to UGA regardless of their needs- or anyone elses.

the reality of college life these days is it takes way more than 4 years to complete a college degree.
tying funding to srictly graduation rates will create the same stupid problems K-12 has.

I’ve been a big advocate for major college reform, but this ins’t it.

bootney farnsworth

December 13th, 2012
6:26 pm

@ ole guy

should we pay:

soldiers for the amount of people they kill?
cops for amount of arrests?
politicans by the amount of bills introduced?
firemen by the fires they put out?
clergy by the proven number of souls saved?

endorsing payment via degrees is the same as assembly line workers per unit and hookers by trick.

bootney farnsworth

December 13th, 2012
6:27 pm

set funding at X rate, and adjust degrees offered and stupid presidental ego trips accordingly

ScienceTeacher671

December 13th, 2012
6:35 pm

What a stupid idea.

RTY

December 13th, 2012
7:04 pm

Wait Gov. Deal will come up with another great idea and the State Legislature will follow: Charter Colleges – since the public colleges can’t produce degrees they will give the poor student a chance to change schools. Deal and the Legislature won’t stop till businesses move out and people stop moving into Georgia. By then it will be too late.

teaching taxpayer

December 13th, 2012
7:28 pm

Bootney, I suspect hookers may be insulted by the indirect comparison you’ve made between us professors and them. That said, more and more of our students are being taught by adjuncts, term-to-term faculty, and non tenure-track “lecturers.” These faculty know they have to teach to the student evaluations. High grades are an effective way of doing so.

Once upon a time, administrators complained about grade inflation. Now, when it comes to non tenure-track faculty, they’ll demand it. Our students will have credentials but not educations.

old teach

December 13th, 2012
7:29 pm

As we in k12 education have watched students’ effort steadily diminish over the last decade, the one anthem we have sung is, “Just wait until you get to college. The professor won’t accept late work or allow you to take tests multiple times. You’ll have to toe his/her line.” Oh well…

old teach

December 13th, 2012
7:31 pm

This action basically removes the last bit of personal responsibility for the student.

catlady

December 13th, 2012
7:50 pm

It only makes sense if you greatly restrict admissions to the clearly-well-prepared, and to those who can afford to go without having to stop and work. I doubt that we would be willing to accept those restrictions, however.

Tech Prof

December 13th, 2012
8:08 pm

Human nature is to survive. If you put k-12 teachers in the position that test scores can cost them their mortgage payment, grocery allowance, health benefits, etc., then the decision become easy for many … fill out a few test answer sheets so the teacher and his/her family have a place to live, food to eat, etc. We have witnessed this in GA, right? Now, we thurst the same sort of high stakes into higher education. Pass Johnny and Susie so that you can have your job and, therefore, your home, your food, etc. The end result is so easy to see. Johnny and Susie are awarded (don’t earn) their degrees, but are unemployable. Businesses will cry for applicants who can actually do something useful, but will notice that USG grads can’t. Sigh.

Prof

December 13th, 2012
8:18 pm

@ Old Physics Teacher, December 13th, 5:33 pm.

Well, I’m in the liberal arts faculty, so what can I say? Sorry if I sounded smug; it’s more resigned. This effort to tie state funding to a 6-year graduation rate is going on all over the country; and probably the drastic raising of the standards for our HOPE scholarships is also tied to this. Why give HOPE money to high school seniors who probably won’t graduate in 6 years?

By the way, what happens for tenured faculty when there aren’t enough students to fill a class is that they have to teach a freshman-sophomore class instead. And if they give out too many low grades, the word gets out and students don’t sign up for their classes. Sort of a self-regulating market, you might say. The “garbage” that you “lowly non-tenured high school teachers” have to deal with has already floated our way… I’ve been dealing with its aftermath for just about ten years, when all the changes began in K-12.

And AthensResident, I don’t think it’s going to do any good for us to send letters/emails to our legislators. This was decided about 2 years ago. I read about it in the AJC.

But I will go down in flames before I accept late work, allow retesting, or lower my standards!

Tech Prof

December 13th, 2012
8:22 pm

@Prof — “But I will go down in flames before I accept late work, allow retesting, or lower my standards!” Here here!!