December 2011

  • Cost-Cutting Fever: Affluent Students Choose Community Colleges

    Barry Lenson

    Cost-Cutting Fever: Affluent Students Choose Community Colleges “A recent national survey by Sallie Mae, the student loan giant, has found that 22 percent of students from households earning $100,000 or more attended community colleges in the 2010-11 academic year, up from 12 percent in the previous year. It was the highest rate reported in four years of surveys.” -          Source: “Two-year colleges draw more affluent students” by Daniel de Vise, The Washington Post, November 2, 2011  Wealthier kids have started to enroll in community colleges. Why shouldn’t they? Nobody has money to burn today, not even rich people. As you have probably noticed, wealthy people like things that represent good value, like good ...

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  • New Study: Online Learning Could Build Better Reading Skills

    Barry Lenson

    New Study: Online Learning Could Build Better Reading Skills This year's National Survey of Student Engagement (published annually by Indiana University’s Center for Postsecondary Research) is a big document to read. It’s packed with 50 pages of data about learning styles and practices. The study reports, for example, that engineering majors take more time preparing for classes than do students who are pursuing any other major. Or that only 70% of students ask for help when they don’t understand course material. We spent some time perusing all that information and found, on page 17, one really interesting finding . . . Students who take courses online seem to develop better reading skills than students who take all their course ...

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  • There’s More than One Way to Complete Your Degree

    Barry Lenson

    There’s More than One Way to Complete Your Degree This is a true story. When I was raking leaves two days ago, I struck up a conversation with a neighbor of mine who was walking her dog. “What’s your daughter up to?” I asked. “She’s working during the day as a store manager, and as a waitress at night,” my neighbor answered. “She was supposed to graduate from college two years ago, but it’s taken her two extra years because the courses she needed weren’t available when she needed them.” Two extra years? Two years! I asked her how that could possibly have happened, and she explained that there were several reasons. Her daughter’s university had not replaced a number of professors after they retired. To s ...

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  • Start College Today

    Barry Lenson

    Start College Today Have your plans to attend college stalled? If so, it’s hardly a wonder. After all, applying to college is a pretty off-putting process. You have to get your high school transcripts sent to the colleges where you want to apply. You have to take the SAT, the ACT and other standardized tests. You have to write an application essay for the standard application, and maybe a few more if required. You have to get people to write recommendation letters for you. You have to fill out the FAFSA to get financial aid, and you have to apply for loans. Maybe you also have to schedule interviews and college visits. What a process. No wonder if you’ve been delaying. But there’s another option for you. You can enroll today in ...

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  • Is Online Learning Right for You?

    Barry Lenson

    Is Online Learning Right for You? A high school student came up to me at a college fair this month and said, “My mom lost her job last year and we don’t have enough money for me to start out at a high-ticket regular college. Online learning looks like a good option, because I have to start working a job as soon as I graduate high school. But what does it take to make online college work?” That’s a good question. Because no mistake about it, certain skills, attitudes and resources are needed to be an effective online learner. (The same could be said of classroom learners too.) Let’s see what they are . . . Resources A modern, stable computer. A strong and reliable Internet connection. A reliable way to back up work, ...

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