Critics of college scorecards speak out
President Barack Obama recently tackled the issues of college affordability and transparency during his State of the Union address. To make Christian colleges and secular institutions more accountable, the U.S. Department of Education launched its college scorecard website earlier this week to provide students with more information about prospective schools. While some academic advocates welcomed the initiative, others have not been so enthusiastic, according to Inside Higher Ed.
Some education experts believe the college scorecard system oversimplifies much of the data it presents to prospective students. Although the scorecards provide individuals with data on tuition and fees, employment prospects and loan default rates at specific Christian colleges and secular institutions, they do not offer any insight into learning outcomes, long-term success and student satisfaction – factors that some officials believe are potentially crucial to prospective students.
“It takes a very narrow focus on the whole idea of how one chooses a college and what one should consider,” W. Kent Barnds, vice president for enrollment, communications and planning at a liberal arts college in Illinois, told the news source. “The criteria the scorecards rank colleges on, it dismisses some of the reasons students go to college in the first place, some of the reasons we exist.”