Global Education and Liberal Education

Dan Weiner passed along an essay entitled “Global Education and Liberal Education” from Peter N. Stearns, Provost at George Mason University.  It appeared in the Association of American Colleges and Universities, Liberal Education, Summer 2010, Vol. 96, No. 3.

In the essay Provost Stearns notes:

“But no effort to provide a global education can possibly succeed without a solid curricular base, which must be the focus of any discussion of the relationship between global and liberal education. Considerable attention must go to programs that serve students for whom global issues constitute a major focus, and there are clearly liberal-educational opportunities here. Because globalization itself is a multifaceted process, embracing contacts ranging from trade to culture and from the environment to health, a state-of-the-art global affairs major becomes a significantly interdisciplinary endeavor, always remembering that language training and discussion of international relations continue to have strong roles to play. A dozen or more disciplines can be (actively and) usefully engaged in shaping and staffing concentrations of this sort, which, happily, at least for the moment, also draw in sizeable numbers of interested students.”


A Canadian Perspective

Mamdouh Shoukri, President and Vice Chancellor of York University, in an October 29 column “Universities Change with the Times” in the Toronto Star discussed what he sees as the most important trends in higher education:

“Evolving cultural and social environments, heightened demands for a post-secondary education, rising costs and expectations surrounding the role of universities, funding uncertainties and reluctance to accept change are some of the many obstacles facing post-secondary institutions. If Canadian universities are going to compete successfully in today’s global knowledge-based society, it is crucial they address these challenges.

At a recent conference in New York, I presented my views on the leading drivers affecting this change to the presidents of some of world’s foremost universities. In my opinion, these drivers are: internationalization, online learning, demographics, challenges to university autonomy and society engagement.”

ACT Annual Report Released on College and Career Readiness

The Condition of College and Career Readiness, 2010

“Since 1959, ACT has collected and reported data on students’ academic readiness for college. Because becoming ready for college and career is a process that occurs throughout elementary and secondary education, measuring academic performance over time in the context of college and career readiness provides meaningful and compelling information about the college readiness of students.”

Higher Education Challenges: A Collection of Observations

Interesting information on economic issues facing institutions of higher education can be found in the series of “National Crosstalk” newsletters from the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education.

James Duderstadt, “Aligning American Higher Education with a 21st Century Agenda

Michael Crow, “Enterprise: The Path to Transformation for Emerging Public Universities

Michael Crow, “Building an Entrepreneurial University

Luis M. Proenza, “Beyond Research Rankings,” Inside Higher Education, May 17, 2007

Mortgaging Our Future: How Financial Barriers to College Undercut America’s Global Competitiveness, ” 2006

Transition Matters-Community College to Bachelor’s Degree,” 2008

Chronicle of Higher Education Annual “Great Colleges to Work For” Survey

Josh Fishman, “97 Colleges are Recognized as Great Colleges to Work For in Chronicle Survey,” Chronicle of Higher Education, July 25, 2010.

“The results of The Chronicle of Higher Education’s third annual Great Colleges to Work For survey, published [July 25], capture some of America’s most valued institutions at some of their most challenging moments. About 43,000 people at 275 campuses responded to the survey. It found that colleges continue to do well at creating work that makes a difference, providing jobs that fit the individual, and fostering a high degree of institutional pride. But now colleges are accomplishing those things in an economy that has been in a long slump, and tight budgets seem to be eroding confidence in college leadership, the survey found.”

Coping Strategies for Universities & Useful Database for Higher Education Finance

The Delta Project Report entitled “Trends in College Spending 1998-2008: Where Does the Money Come From? Where Does It Go? What Does It Buy?” was posted on July 8 along with a link to an interactive database that allows access to “information on finance, performance, and enrollments for individual institutions, groups of institutions, or the nation as a whole.”  The database offers a useful way of understanding a set of complicated factors, and at Craig Cornell’s recommendation I’m drawing specific attention to its features.  The database has six “primary metrics”:

  • Revenue: Where Does the Money Come From?
  • Expenditures: Where Does the Money Go?
  • Cost/Price/Subsidy: What’s the Student Share of Costs?
  • Performance: Outcomes and Spending
  • Spending Comparisons: Prices and Enrollment vs. Spending
  • Enrollment: Where Do Students Go?


Christine M. Keller, “Coping Strategies of Public Universities During the Economic Recession of 2009: Results of a Survey on the Impact of the Financial Crisis on University Campuses,” (November 2009) Association of Public and Land-grant Universities.

“In August and September of 2009, APLU surveyed its 188 member universities about the financial situation on their campuses.  The survey asked for information on state appropriations, tuition and fees, student enrollment, and educational revenues.  It also asked institutions how they were handling budget shortfall in both the short- and the long-term.”

Role of Politics in State Higher Ed. Funding, OU Campus Master Plan, and State of Ohio Job Outlook

Michael K. McLendon, James C. Hearn, and Christine G. Mokher “Partisans, Professionals, and Power: The Role of Political Factors in State Higher Education Funding,” The Journal of Higher Education, Vol. 80, No. 6 (November/December 2009).

“In this paper, we report the results of a longitudinal analysis of factors associated with state funding effort for higher education. We begin by developing a conceptual framework that more closely integrates key state political indicators that have received insufficient attention in the past. The focus then turns to describing the construction of a panel data set and a fixed-effects analysis that we conducted on the drivers of state appropriations to higher education, measured as appropriations per $1,000 personal income, over a period of nearly two decades, from 1984 to 2004. The concluding section identifies several findings providing distinctively new perspectives on patterns of state support for higher education over this period.”

Ohio University Campus Master Plan (Facilities Planning and Space Management)

State of Ohio Job Outlook, Employment Projections to 2016, Ohio Department of Job and Family Services