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Politics & Current Affairs

The College Bubble

Though Universities have been seen by many as a safe haven in this period of economic decline, their stability and worth has recently become a subject of concern.

Following a flurry of stories earlier in the year about a drastic decline in liberal arts college applications, this week Inside Higher Ed reports on the erosion of the traditional liberal arts education. In a trend predicted by by David Breneman in 1990, traditional liberal arts institutions have been evolving into professionally orientated institutions or – like Antioch College – shutting their doors. The parallel move of Universities away from tenure track positions towards contract teaching roles is further evidence of profound change in the world of higher education. Meanwhile, the New York Times looks at another potential threat to the world of higher ed — the declining value of the masters degree. Are masters degrees an essential element of a complete education or a shameful cash cow for struggling Universities? Professors and economists weigh in on both sides of the issue.