“Are Too Many Students Going to College?”

The cover feature for the November 13 issue of the Chronicle Review section of the The Chronicle of Higher Education is a forum on the question: “Are Too Many Students Going to College?

People are sure to differ in their judgments as to how that question should be answered. What I want to call attention to is the Chronicle Review editors’ presumptions as to what kind of question is being addressed, as indicated by their choice of Forum Participants:


  • Sandy Baum, professor emerita of economics at Skidmore College and senior policy analyst for the College Board
  • Bryan Caplan, associate professor of economics at George Mason University
  • W. Norton Grubb, professor of policy, organization, measurement, and evaluation at the University of California at Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education
  • Charles Murray, political scientist and scholar at the American Enterprise Institute
  • Marty Nemko, career counselor based in Oakland, Calif.
  • Richard K. Vedder, director of the Center for College Affordability and Productivity and professor of economics at Ohio University
  • Marcus A. Winters, senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute
  • Alison Wolf, professor of public-sector management at King’s College London
  • Daniel Yankelovich, founder and chairman of Viewpoint Learning Inc., which develops dialogues to resolve public-policy issues; Public Agenda, a nonprofit policy-research organization; and DYG Inc., a market- and social-research firm

Apparently, they see this as a question of economics, a question for which they see no need for input informed by curriculum consciousness.

Chicago (A) style citation for the feature:

  • Baum, Sandy, W. Norton Grubb, Charles Murray, Marty Nemko, Richard K. Vedder, Marcus A. Winters, Alison Wolf, and Daniel Yankelovich. “Are Too Many Students Going to College?” The Chronicle (of Higher Education) Review, November 13 2009, B7-B10.

Click here for a Curricublog post on Curriculum Studies and the questions concerning “What is worthwhile?”


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