In "Now What?" (Inside Higher ED, March 21, 2013), Paul Fain writes that U.S. Department of Education “gainful employment” regulations,have been struck down by a court. The regulations were to measure performance of vocational programs in education institutions. One measure was the percentage of graduates repaying their loans. This seems a curious measure to use and one a court might well strike out, as the educational institution would have little say on if its graduates pay their loans or not. It would be reasonable to see if the courses provided a qualification in a job category in demand, what the rate of employment of graduates was and how much their salary went up. However, such measures are used in Australia only to provide potential students with information when choosing courses, it is left to the students to decide what courses to take.
As an example, here are the statistics for Computer Science graduates from the Australian National University (where I teach), as reported by the Australian Government's "My University" website:
The ANU rates well, except on the "Good Teaching Scale (45.8%). Staff have been encouraged to get trained in the latest education techniques and make full use of technology, to improve teaching and I have found this works Even before finishing the ANU's certificate in Higher Education, my student satisfaction scores increased, after applying what I learned on the program. I discuss some of what can be done, in "MOOCs with Books".
Overall satisfaction rate (opens in a new window) 79.2% Good Teaching Scale (opens in a new window) 45.8% Generic Skills Scale (opens in a new window) 85.4%
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