Assembling credits from a variety of online courses, one man earned an associate degree from an accredited college for a total cost of $3,000. Courses ranged from art appreciation, music appreciation, macroeconomics and accounting to a series of Federal Emergency Management Agency courses, including Livestock in Disasters. Just a wee bit incoherent?
To fix student loans, make college unnecessary, writes columnist Ed Quillen in the Denver Post.
Sending more people to college is no solution. Indeed, it would make the problem worse, for it would just drive costs up further while putting a glut of graduates on the market, thereby depressing their earnings.
Instead, we need to extend our civil-rights laws to forbid job discrimination based on educational credentials. Employers would be free to test potential employees to see if they had relevant skills and knowledge, but they could not ask for educational credentials.
If college was optional, prices would plummet, Quillen predicts. “People who wanted to study medieval French literature could still pursue degrees at schools populated by scholars seeking knowledge,” while job seekers would learn by reading, studying online, apprenticeship or whatever enabled them to pass the qualifying test.
After all, you don’t need a degree in English to ask, “Do you want fries with that?”
As learning goes online, it will increase the pressure to find ways for independent learners to prove what they know.
The number of diploma mills grew by 48 percent worldwide last year according to the 2011 Accredibase Report. Most operate online, reports BRB’s Public Records Blog.
The U.S. remains the world’s fake college capital with a 20 percent increase in diploma mills in 2010. High school diploma mills “appear to be a growing segment” in the U.S.