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Highlights from Higher Ed: Snitching, Becoming More Selective and Getting Smarter

1. Accepted to Harvard? You better watch your back.

Though 35% of admissions officers check prospective students’ personal social media accounts as a part of their decision-making process, they can’t uncover all the dirty details. According to The 74, disgruntled students jealous of their classmates’ offers of admission to prestigious universities are more than happy to help bring what they do miss to light.

2. Top ranked schools are becoming more selective.

As the value of a four-year degree increases, public and private schools are becoming more competitive with admissions, says U.S. News & World Report. “The pressure is most acute at these top universities,” says Vinay Bhaskara, co-founder of Massachusetts-based CollegeVine, which provides college admissions guidance. “Having a college degree in America has gone from a nice-to-have to something you need to have for even a lower-middle-class life in American society today.”

3. Are students getting smarter?

Recent research shows that the proportion of high school seniors graduating with an A average has grown quite a bit over the past generation. The issue: more teachers may be handing out As but students are not necessarily doing more to earn them.

4. Perceived value of higher ed yet another area on which Democrats and Republicans are split.

A recent survey shows that while 55% of Americans think that colleges and universities have a positive effect on the nation, a majority of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents disagree. 72% of Democrats and those who lean Democratic, on the other hand, say that colleges and universities have a positive effect.

Recommended Reading

The Diversity BargainThe Diversity Bargain
Do they have a copy at your local library? WorldCat will tell you. 

Affirmative action is a hot topic in education circles, but what do students think about merit and race? Natasha K. Warikoo explores this perspective in this recently published title.

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