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Obama Admin. Renews College Costs Focus

Today's Inside Higher Ed reports on the outcomes of yesterday's White House roundtable discussion with college and university presidents about ways to reduce college costs, defined in terms of the total cost of educating a student as opposed to the level of tuition a student must pay to attend an institution. IHE writes that the discussion centered on the total cost of educating a student because the Obama Administration sees that as the key to improving both affordability (and thus reducing student debt) and access (which is key to meeting the administration's goals of making the U.S. first in the world in the proportion of college graduates by 2020). IHE did not indicate whether the use of technology to improve learning outcomes and operational efficiency was part of the dialogue. However, references to online learning and cloud services as options for addressing academic and operational productivity continue to appear in policy discussions at the federal, state, and institutional levels, indicating that higher education technology leaders and professionals may ultimately play key roles in helping their institutions and higher education generally to find effective solutions to the national college cost challenge.

Comments

The New York Times article about the White House roundtable on college costs provides some further detail on the meeting, including that the role of technology in helping to address cost and completion issues was part of the discussion:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/06/education/obama-meets-with-college-lea...

Talks on the total cost of education translate not only to student affordability and access but also to the long term effect of college completion. Along with Obama's administration focus on college costs, state budgets cuts are also of concerned.  Reference The Chronicle article:

http://chronicle.com/article/Cuts-in-State-Budgets-Threaten/130038/

I know President Obama and his minister for Education's university and college completion agenda. But I was not aware it had been adopted as Statutory Law by the Congress.  The above paragraph refers to the community institutions' association like MUST University and its members main goals including college completion, but I wasn't aware that they made law or policy for the entire United States, or even real, er, four year colleges.