Markets, Technology, and the Purpose of Education

An “On the Issues” Post from the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education []



Two thoughtful pieces, one recently published in the New York Times and one in Forbes, ask us to step back from our current obsession with “innovation” and “disruption,” business principles and technology in education, and think—just for a moment–about the purpose of education. It may be called “corny” these days to talk about the importance of human relationships, “values,” or “the human experience” in education; but our failure to do so, both authors suggest, helps explain some of the floundering and some of the failure in our thinking about higher education that are hard to deny.

What the authors suggest may not “scale” and may not slash costs, but both articles are worth reading for those willing to “reboot” our program for the future of higher education.




Previous “On the Issues” Posts are available at the CFHE website or here:

“MOOCs, Pearson, and Profits”:

“The Cold Facts about Higher Education and Contingent Faculty Appointments”:

“More Bad Ideas on Higher Education from Florida”:

“Who Needs a Liberal Education These Days?”:

“Who Says College Can’t Be Free?”:

“MOOCs: Are They about Access or Money?”:

“Adjunct Faculty Need Far Treatment in the Implementation of the New Healthcare Law”:

“The ‘Business Model’ for Higher Education”:

“Udacity/San Jose State MOOC Experiment Fails”:

“Big $$$ Foundations Are Driving the Policy Train”:

“American Higher Education: Separate and Unequal?”: “Pay It Forward”:

“The End of History?”:

“Unintended Consequences in the Race to Improve College Completion Rates”:

“Graduate Students and the Future of Higher Education”:

“’Ivory Tower’?  Think Again”:

“’Higher Education Misconceived’”:

“Support Free Public Higher Education”:

“What’s College For?”:

“Higher Education ‘Reform’: The Price Paid by the Next Generation of Students and Professors”:

“Reinvesting in Higher Ed: A Lesson from Four States”:

“Questioning the False Promises of the Online Education Industry: A New Video Released by the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education”:

“Great News Coverage of CFHE Video Awaiting Your Comments”:

“CFHE 7th National Gathering Focuses on Affordable, Quality Higher Education for All”:

“The College Affordability Crisis: What’s at Stake”:

“The College Affordability Crisis: Real Solutions or Lip Service”:

“What Helps Students Learn?”:

“Adjuncts, Faculty Working Conditions, and Student Learning Conditions”:

“Undermining Affordability and Access to Higher Education”:

Other posts related to the CFHE are available here:





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