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Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy by [Rosen, Andrew S.]
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Length: 208 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

Review

The Washington Post - January 20, 2012

"CHANGE.EDU: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy," By Andrew S. Rosen By Bill Gates

Theodore Hesburgh, the former president of the University of Notre Dame, used to joke that education was one of the few things people were willing to pay for and not get. While that may still be true for some students whose parents are picking up the tab, for many others eager to land a decent job with a future, society needs to do more to ensure that all students get the education and training they need to keep pace with the evolving demands of employers.

In "Change.edu," Andrew Rosen calls for greater relevance, access, accountability and transparency in higher education. He builds a persuasive case that many non-traditional students -- such as working adults, parents and those at risk of dropping out -- are not well served by traditional institutions. New approaches, he argues, are critical to ensure that more people have the opportunity to obtain college degrees.

As chief executive of Kaplan, Inc., a for-profit educational services company, Rosen offers a prescription that will rankle some traditionalists in academia. But I find his insights truly important for the debate on what needs to be done to improve the success of post-secondary education in America. (Full disclosure: Kaplan is a subsidiary of The Washington Post Company, where my wife, Melinda, served on the board from 2004 to 2010.)

The United States used to lead the world in the percentage of adults with college degrees, but has now fallen to 10th place. That's partly because we have such a high dropout rate. While more than two-thirds of students who graduate from U.S. high schools attend college or pursue postsecondary training, barely one-third of those will end up getting a degree. Something is clearly broken.

This is especially worrisome because more than half of jobs today require a college education, and that trend will continue. By 2018, t

Chronicle of Higher Education Innovations Blog

Andrew Rosen has written a great new book on higher education in America, "Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy." It is provocative, insightful, and mostly correct. Yet, I predict, it will be largely ignored by the higher-education community. One reason: Rosen is the CEO of Kaplan Higher Education, and probably viewed by many as a biased supporter of for-profit schools, rather than a serious commentator on the general strengths and weaknesses of America's colleges and universities (this is somewhat ironic, since he has degrees from Duke and Yale, and has lots of nice things to say regarding traditional higher education).

Rosen makes five big points. First, higher education once in a great while is hit with a truly disruptive innovation. He cites the rise of the private-sector (for-profit) schools as one such disruption, and also considers the Morrill Act (which created land-grant schools) and the postwar explosive expansion of universities and community colleges as such examples of disruptive innovations.

Second, Rosen argues that many universities have lost sight of their noble mission because they have been stricken by Harvard Envy, trying to emulate the nation's most prestigious schools.

Third, much of conventional higher education is an ever more expensive exercise in the dilution of learning and the development of frivolous resort communities (campuses) with emphasis on climbing walls, football, and luxury housing

Fourth, the for-profits are incentivized to focus on student outcomes and learning--paying laser-like attention to this most critical mission of higher education.

Lastly, the attacks on the for-profits for various transgressions are wide of the mark, and, indeed, dollar for dollar, those schools deliver the best value to taxpayers for educating millions of Americans.

Of course, that is what you might expect a CEO of a for-profit college to say. But Ros

"Americans know that our primary and secondary schools are woefully under-performing but believe our colleges and universities are second to none. Andy Rosen blows a big hole in that belief, showing that, just when we need to grow the number of students getting a high-quality post-secondary education, our state universities are in financial distress and our private schools are quickly becoming too costly for all but the wealthy. This is a must-read book for those who care about fixing our nation's higher education problems before they become intractable."

- Former New York City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein

ZDNet - November 30, 2011

Change.edu: Insights from Kaplan's CEO

Summary: "Change.edu: Rebooting for the new talent economy is one of the best books I've read on the changing face of education (and the unfortunate turns that our higher education system continues to take).

"I recently had the opportunity to read Change.edu: Rebooting for the new talent economy, by Andrew Rosen. Rosen is the chairman and CEO of Kaplan, Inc., the activities of which reach from brick and mortar test prep facilities to 1:1 tutoring to fully online higher education through Kaplan University. As a result, he's in a unique position to discuss the sorts of changes that can drastically shift how we think about higher education and education in general. The book itself is one of the clearest calls to action I've read as we look for real solutions to problems of opportunity, job growth, access, and competitiveness in post-recession America.

Rosen brings forward several themes that fly in the face of our long-held views and beliefs about higher education. Most importantly, he starts the book by calling out Harvard, our oldest and most respected institution of higher learning. The problem with education is not Harvard or highly competitive schools that turn our bright young minds and vital research. Rather, the problem is what he calls "Harvard Envy."

When schools invest millions competing to be the biggest, most sought-after, highest ranked schools, chasing the Harvard ideal, they effectively shut out hundreds of thousands of students badly in need of higher education but unable to afford it or, just as likely, unable to get into increasingly competitive schools. Unfortunately, too many schools end up, as he points out, in a vicious cycle of one-upmanship. My favorite quote from the book describes this problem perfectly:

In retailing, the two biggest success stories of my lifetime have been Wal-Mart and Target, both aimed at mass-market consumers who'd pr

GettingSmart.com"

"

Not too much sparks the fury of the education status quo more today than the privatization of education and specifically for profit colleges. Forgotten is the original mission of higher education from its origins at the start of our country: to deliver a practical, useful education. Would our founding fathers be embarrassed at the frivolities of the social programs and free form curriculum offered at many colleges and universities without any thought or reason to the useless degrees and unimaginable college debt accumulated to obtain those degrees? Many of these new degree holders are now landing back into their parent's homes upon graduation instead of the once instantaneous promising jobs and careers.

Rosen's book starts out with the history of higher education in the United States and the basic question of what the purpose of a college education should be. With the focus on extra curricular activities and the focus of "social opportunities" that many college existences concentrate on, perhaps the original focus of a "practical" education has been overlooked.

This books looks at the background of the earliest colleges in the US such as Berkeley which started out as two different schools, one modeled after Harvard and Yale and the other focusing on a practical education to farming, mining, and mechanical arts. Berkeley in its current life says Rosen "stretches the boundaries of practicality." Typical classes, which can include the study of scrabble, can be part of the day of study upon which students retire to their spa style dormitories.

Rosen also points out that the ultimate education for many of us is the style of education that the Harvard brand brings. Many colleges have imitated the Harvard style and who of us hasn't dreamt of the "Hahvard" education for our children? With the inevitable "Harvard Envy" that Rosen outlines is the movement for institutions to market themselves upward by focusing on the prestige of the

Change.edu: Time to Reboot Learning

One would expect a book by the CEO of a for-profit university to mount a vigorous defense of the much-maligned for-profit higher education sector. But what one might not expect is that the same book would do so in a thoughtful, well-researched manner that discusses not just the place of for-profit universities in education, but also offers a compelling narrative on the state of American higher education across the board--from its elite institutions to its community colleges--and addresses the far larger challenges the country's colleges and universities must tackle for America to maintain--or even regain--its competitive edge.

Yet that's exactly what Andy Rosen, CEO of Kaplan, Inc., accomplishes in "Change.edu: Rebooting for the new talent economy," which whirls through the history of higher education in the United States and into its uncertain future in a refreshingly enjoyable and brief but comprehensive 200 pages.

Framed against the backdrop of America's need to educate more of its citizens far better, Change.edu is divided into four broad themes. The first is a discussion of "Harvard Envy" and "Club College," which explains why colleges strive to become bigger and better along dimensions that often don't line up with improving student learning and causes greater investment in the "educational haves" as opposed to the "educational have nots." Next, Rosen explores how community colleges are meant to help the educational have nots but have a broken funding model that limits their reach. Rosen then examines the complementary role the for-profit colleges play and concludes with a discussion of how learning should guide government policy for colleges and universities of all stripes in the future.

At times Rosen is intensely critical of many colleges' and universities' excesses and limitations. To illustrate the points, he documents everything from a sadly amusing competition to house the t

"School Library Journal" Social Sciences/ Education, October 1, 2011

Rosen, chairman and CEO of Kaplan, Inc., has written a smart, easy-to-read overview of the weaknesses of colleges and universities and the benefits of the fast-growing private-sector colleges, one of which, Kaplan University, he heads. He argues that too many public and private universities focus on campus amenities and institutional prestige rather than what their students learn and that community colleges provide access but have an unsustainable financial model. Private-sector universities prosper only because they give students new skills, so they pay close attention to what their students learn and how they can learn better. Rosen presents data and analyses that challenge the usual criticisms of private-sector universities--that they don't educate and they charge too much, misuse government funds, and recruit too aggressively. While this book will not quiet all critics, it effectively identifies weaknesses in both the nonprofit and the public sectors and should stimulate college presidents to reconsider some of their priorities. VERDICT: A well-written and thought-provoking critique of contemporary higher education of interest to all readers concerned about the future strength of American society.

--Elizabeth R. Hayford, Northwestern Univ., Evanston, IL

"Kirkus Reviews" October 15, 2011

An enjoyable look back at the history of higher education in America and the startling new ways it might develop in the future.

The author and CEO of test-prep powerhouse Kaplan is willing to doff his mortarboard to the Ivy League--but only because Rosen is absolutely convinced that one day, often maligned private-sector institutions like his will rule the day. Incredibly, his argument never comes off as self-serving; the author's thorough exploration of "Harvard Envy" and the rise of "resort" campuses is both fascinating and enlightening. He cites spiraling costs, dwindling budgets and improved technology as some of the many reasons behind this inevitable changeover. If America is going to compete with the global brain trust, the author argues, it will have to be done from behind a computer screen. The prestige that Ivy League schools command is largely due to their exclusivity, a fact that runs counter to the growing need to expose increasing numbers of people to higher education. Thus, somewhere in America, there is a college campus contemplating the highest rock-climbing wall in an effort to woo new students. That's just about as ridiculous as online distance learning--what might be thought of as the successor to old "correspondence courses"--becoming as viable as Yale or Duke. But both are happening. The U.S., writes Rosen, has no other choice but to look to virtual for-profit learning outlets like Kaplan and the University of Phoenix to boost the number of college graduates.

Presently, this may be the subject of snide editorials and contemptuous hearings, but Rosen envisions a day when for-profit learning centers step up and fill the education gap much in the same way "land grant" and community colleges did in years past. The alternative, he fears, spells trouble for American supremacy in education.

."..a smart, easy-to-read overview of the weaknesses of colleges and universities and the benefits of the fast-growing private-sector colleges...While this book will not quiet all the critics, it effectively identifies weaknesses in both the nonprofit and the public sectors and should stimulate college presidents to reconsider some of their priorities." "--School Library Journal"

"Presently, this may be the subject of snide editorials and contemptuous hearings, but Rosen envisions a day when for-profit learning centers step up and fill the education gap much in the same way "land grant" and community colleges did in years past. The alternative, he fears, spells trouble for American supremacy in education." "--Kirkus Reviews
"
"Andrew Rosen has written a great new book on higher education in America, Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy. It is provocative, insightful, and mostly correct. Yet, I predict, it will be largely ignored by the higher-education community." --Richard Vedder, Innovations blog for "The Chronicle of Higher Education
"
"Americans know that our primary and secondary schools are woefully under-performing but believe our colleges and universities are second to none. Andy Rosen blows a big hole in that belief, showing that, just when we need to grow the number of students getting a high-quality post-secondary education, our state universities are in financial distress and our private schools are quickly becoming too costly for all but the wealthy. This is a must-read book for those who care about fixing our nation's higher education problems before they become intractable." --Former New York City Schools Chancellor, Joel Klein

..".a smart, easy-to-read overview of the weaknesses of colleges and universities and the benefits of the fast-growing private-sector colleges...While this book will not quiet all the critics, it effectively identifies weaknesses in both the nonprofit and the public sectors and should stimulate college presidents to reconsider some of their priorities." "--School Library Journal"
"Presently, this may be the subject of snide editorials and contemptuous hearings, but Rosen envisions a day when for-profit learning centers step up and fill the education gap much in the same way "land grant" and community colleges did in years past. The alternative, he fears, spells trouble for American supremacy in education." "--Kirkus Reviews
"
"Andrew Rosen has written a great new book on higher education in America, Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy. It is provocative, insightful, and mostly correct. Yet, I predict, it will be largely ignored by the higher-education community." --Richard Vedder, Innovations blog for "The Chronicle of Higher Education
"
"Americans know that our primary and secondary schools are woefully under-performing but believe our colleges and universities are second to none. Andy Rosen blows a big hole in that belief, showing that, just when we need to grow the number of students getting a high-quality post-secondary education, our state universities are in financial distress and our private schools are quickly becoming too costly for all but the wealthy. This is a must-read book for those who care about fixing our nation's higher education problems before they become intractable." --Former New York City Schools Chancellor, Joel Klein

About the Author

Andrew S. Rosen is chairman and CEO of Kaplan, Inc., one of the world’s largest and most diverse education organizations.  Throughout his career, Rosen has pioneered new approaches to education with a focus on student achievement and success. He is an outspoken advocate for adult learners, and a frequent speaker on the challenges facing higher education in a knowledge economy.  Mr. Rosen holds an A.B. degree from Duke University and a J.D. from Yale Law School. 

Product Details

  • File Size: 2855 KB
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  • Publisher: Kaplan Publishing (October 4, 2011)
  • Publication Date: October 4, 2011
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  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005OLE1EG
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Top Customer Reviews

By Theresa Welsh on December 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Is the rise of for-profit colleges in the United States a good thing for the American people? You know, the ones that advertise heavily and are often located in malls or office buildings (like the University of Phoenix)? That's the basic question this book attempts to answer.

The author of this book is Chairman and CEO of Kaplan, Inc, the parent company of a for-profit university, Kaplan University. As you might expect, he makes a case that colleges such as the one he runs ARE good for the country; that they make education accessible to non-traditional students at less overall cost, and make a big contribution to the national goal of a more educated population. The students they attract are typically lower-income, older people who may be working full-time and have spouses and children, whose focus is on getting a better job with more pay. Rosen says colleges like Kaplan deliver, providing the kind of skills that employers are looking for.

I found this book to be very well written and remarkably balanced in its presentation, and I learned some things I didn't realize about how American institutions of higher learning are financed. Even with the exorbitant tuition charged today, these payments are just a small part of the real cost. I didn't realize how much of the funding for public colleges comes from the government, directly, not just through student loans...and how fragile this funding can be. During hard times, when more people turn to educational institutions to improve their job skills, these colleges often have fewer slots for new students.

The heavily endowed, high-prestige private universities don't worry about whether they can take more students. They only want the cream of the crop of young people just coming out of high school.
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The author of this book, Andrew S. Rosen, is the chairman and CEO of Kaplan, Inc., a business which might be familiar to many readers. It not only offers academic testing programs for students across the country but also Kaplan University's online program.

NONE of this takes away from the important messages in this book. In fact, Rosen has been in a unique position to see the gaps between what students want - and need - to learn versus what is offered to them. In particular, lower income students have less access to an education which allows them a chance at actual employment. With limited finances, are they forced to work at inadequate jobs, poorly paid, for a lifetime? In addition to this, Rosen reveals how supposedly "affordable" colleges are raising tuition and other expenses by trying to compete with the most expensive colleges. Do these universities really need non-academic luxuries to draw students? Shouldn't they be allocating the lion's share of their funds towards better educational programs and top college professors?

That is a major focus of this book and I also found the section on the histories of Cornell, Purdue, etc to be fascinating. They were formed when a higher education was not taken for granted and only a relatively small percentage of the population went to college. How they have evolved and affected so many other colleges! Rosen's book is a call to action and a chance for readers to think about the true mission of a quality education.

Whether students study online or not, the points made by the author are valid.
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Thought provoking but accessible narrative on the critical issues behind one of the most challenging concerns of the time. Why did higher education evolve to its present state and how can we reach the goal of measurable learning outcomes and assured value for the student, the taxpayer and society.
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Does anyone really like higher education today? Professors lament the loss of teaching as central focus; students condemn the system's apparent aimlessness; parents fear skyrocketing costs; and legislators complain that no one seems answerable for anything. Andrew S. Rosen, president of Kaplan University, contributes an alternative in "Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy," if readers can overlook Rosen's own counter-dogmatic limitations.

Rosen begins with a tour of today's conventional college landscape. Many schools have become obsessed with Ivy League prestige, attempting to match Harvard in research, teaching, and gravitas. Yet no American school can match Harvard's multi-billion-dollar endowment or nearly four centuries of history. So other universities find end runs to boost various rankings, including accouterments that contribute little to education.

Too many schools, especially private non-profits and Division I state universities, compete on amenities rather than academics. The surge in colleges has not improved the student pool, and there's no prestige margin in remedial liberal arts. So top universities become luxury resorts, without improving learning. Schools compete on athletic programs that bleed money, dorm and dining facilities that practically deserve Michelin stars, and recreational facilities that only attract teenagers who don't need to work.

In reaction against this trend, the free market has responded with private, for-profit universities, like Rosen's own Kaplan. The rise of these schools, which currently outpaces conventional ecucation, has earned the ire of the old guard. Yet these schools meet a real need. Since they're primarily trade schools, they benefit from teaching by working professionals in the field.
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