NCES Data: Most University Students are Non-Traditional

Data from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics shows the vast majority of undergraduates are now classified as nontraditional (whooping 71%), whether because they have dependents, are a single caregiver, delayed postsecondary enrollment, do not have a traditional high school diploma, are employed full-time, attend school part-time, or are independent of their parents for financial aid reasons.

Read the Education Dive article which has access to the NCES report.

On Institutions Missions, Ranking and Outcomes

“We prepare the leaders of tomorrow.” “We nurture lifelong learners.” “We aim to have a global impact, while serving our local community.”

How many institutions have statements like these? Tough to distinguish between them since few seem to disclose real tangible outcomes (other than those listed in national/global rankings that mostly emphasize research-related outcomes).

A recent Gallup study (a must read) found that the mission, purpose or vision statements of more than 50 higher education institutions share striking similarities, regardless of institution size, public or private status, land-grant status or religious affiliation, or for-profit or not-for-profit status. The study found that few institutions refer to tangible outcomes — such as the percentage of graduates who actually go on to be “leaders of tomorrow” — to demonstrate how effectively the institution lives its own mission or is able to provide benchmarks for comparison against other institutions. Are classrooms like the one depicted (courtesy of and the teaching that goes in them developing the leaders and lifelong learners needed?

In a time when society needs skilled talent and human resources to address the challenges of today and tomorrow “It’s time (for leaders in) institutions to get serious about defining their purpose, identity and culture — and aligning these (and their strategies) with their outcomes”!

The Times World University Reputation Rankings (2013)

THE’s top 10 (last year in brackets)

1 (1) Harvard University, US
2 (2) Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US
3 (3) University of Cambridge, UK
4 (6) University of Oxford, UK
5 (5) University of California, Berkeley, US
6 (4) Stanford University, US
7 (7) Princeton University, US
8 (9) University of California, Los Angeles, US
9 (8) University of Tokyo, Japan
10 (10)Yale University, US

Institutions in China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea all rose in the THE top 100. Universities in Russia, Turkey and Brazil are also represented.|mgt|3-6-2013|5208664|38085276|NA

Top 50 in engineering:

THE’s top 10 (last year in brackets)