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The College Solution: A Guide for Everyone Looking for the Right School at the Right Price by Lynn O’Shaughnessy

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17. The Rankings Antidote

An accountability process should not just “keep score,” it should also help institutions improve.

—Douglas C. Bennett, president of Earlham College and chair of the National Survey of Student Engagement’s National Advisory Board

Back in 1998, the Pew Charitable Trust gathered a group of higher education big shots to discuss new approaches to measuring quality on college campuses. While colleges and universities have historically had to toe the line with various accreditation bodies and jump through hoops with governmental licensing requirements, much of this involved busy work that had nothing to do with whether a child left college smarter than when he or she arrived.

Those assembled at the powwow were also concerned ...

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