Top stories in higher ed for Thursday
Lumina Foundation is committed to increasing the proportion of Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates and other credentials to 60 percent by 2025.
August 1, 2019
Can a State Help More Residents Finish College?
Emily Richmond, Education Writers Association
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Like many states, Colorado has set an ambitious goal for boosting the number of citizens with advanced degrees and credentials, all with an eye toward filling high-need jobs in areas like health care and manufacturing.

This podcast looks at how the Rocky Mountain state is trying to do that. The work includes encouraging Hispanic and low-income high school students to take advanced courses, adding mentoring  for young people in foster care, and creating a community college mobile learning program to bring certification classes to workers on the job.

Jamie Merisotis
Don’t Call Them Test Companies: How the College Board and ACT Have Shifted Focus
Jeffrey R. Young, EdSurge
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The College Board, which runs the SAT, is changing. In recent months, leaders there have been making a surprising argument—that colleges and parents should stop taking the scores of its signature test so seriously. At the very least, SAT scores should be considered as just one factor among many in judging whether a student is ready for college or a fit for a highly-selective campus.  

In this new era, the College Board is testing a controversial new metric that has been labeled as an “adversity score.” The group calls the new tool the Environmental Context Dashboard, and its goal is to help college admissions officials put an applicant’s SAT score in perspective by showing whether the students come from a place of hardship or relative advantage.

Jamie Merisotis
A Fresh Abuse Rattles College Admissions: Parents Give Up Custody of Their Children So They Can Get Student Aid
Nell Gluckman, The Chronicle of Higher Education
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Another scandal is unfolding in the world of college admissions. Like Operation Varsity Blues, the infamous scheme that helped applicants cheat on standardized tests and bribe college coaches to get into elite institutions, this one appears to demonstrate the lengths to which more-affluent families will go to pave their children’s way through college.

This time it’s financial aid—not acceptance letters—that families are trying to secure. According to articles published on Monday by ProPublica Illinois and The Wall Street Journal , parents in the Chicago suburbs transferred the guardianship of their children to relatives or friends so that the teens would qualify as independents. That way, they did not have to report their parents’ income when they applied for federal, state, and university financial aid.

Massachusetts Higher Ed Leaders Weigh Proposal to Prevent Sudden College Closures
Shailaja Neelakantan, Education Dive
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In response to a recent spate of private college closures, Massachusetts' higher education commissioner is drumming up support for new policies that would expand state oversight to all its colleges and universities that accept state student aid.

The proposed regulations, on which the state Board of Higher Education is expected to vote this fall, would require colleges to notify students ahead of time if they are in precarious financial health and foresee closing. Currently, no such requirement exists. 

The Future Is Digital. Are You?
Polixenia Tohaneanu, NAFSA
Video: Predictive Analytics in Pursuit of Student Success
John Campbell, Bob Carpenter, David Kowalski, Rick Sluder, and Loralyn Taylor, EDUCAUSE Review
Need Extra Time on Tests? It Helps to Have Cash
Dana Goldstein and Jugal K. Patel, The New York Times
Colorado Rises: Maximizing Value for Students and Our State
Colorado Department of Higher Education
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