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Weekly Review
November 5, 2021
At AKA, we closely follow trends and latest developments
in higher education and the nonprofit sector.

Here are some recent articles and reports that we found particularly informative.
From Brookings:
The Male College Crisis is not Just in Enrollment, but Completion
By Richard V. Reeves and Ember Smith
Since the 1972 Title IX laws to promote gender equality in education, the achievement gap between women and men has tilted in the opposite direction, with women receiving many more bachelor’s degrees than men.  As male enrollment rates are diminishing, male completion rates are also seeing an overall decline.  In the 2018-19 academic year, about 74 men received a bachelor’s degree for every 100 women, with even greater disparities for associate and master’s degrees.  Doctoral degrees are the most balanced, with 54% awarded to women and 46% to men. Read this article
From Wired:
Humans Can't Be the Sole Keepers of Scientific Knowledge
By Iulia Georgescu
Considering the massive amounts of research, journal articles, statistics, and reports produced every year in every field, it is impossible for anyone to read everything, even within his/her own disciplinary niche.  Using AI to analyze scientific knowledge without human supervision could yield new striking revelations by connecting previously unseen dots.  While this is still far from a reality, if new knowledge were written in a programming-like language, it would be easier for AI to interpret, enabling faster and more comprehensive analysis in the future. Read this article

From Journal of Legal Education:
How Deans (and Presidents) Should Quit
By Kent D. Syverud
Transitioning out of the role of dean or another senior executive university role can be tricky due to finances, institutional politics, and the nature of the positions.  There are a number of key steps for gracefully and professionally dealing with transition, including maintaining a constructive dialogue with department and university leadership, dealing positively with the inevitable lame duck period, and graciously guiding the successor through the ins and outs of his/her new position.  Whether leaving under voluntary or involuntary circumstances, transition can—and should—be handled with grace. Read this article
From Inside Higher Education:
A Tool to Compare Colleges
By Scott Jaschik
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation sponsored a report calling for the release of information to help students make better choices about where to go to college, in the hope of creating greater transparency in the college selection process.  The Foundation created a tool allowing students to easily compare different institutions’ Pell Grant awards, completion rates, enrollment by race, and more. The tool promises to address a central ambiguity in the college selection process by giving students a clearer view of their options. Read this article
Further Reading
From Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity:
Is College Worth It? A Comprehensive Return on Investment Analysis
By Preston Cooper
This report estimates return on investment (ROI) for nearly 30,000 bachelor’s degrees across 1,775 institutions and many fields of study.  While the report estimates the median bachelor’s degree is worth $306,000, the ROI range is extensive, with some STEM fields at an excess of $1 million, while the arts are zero or less.  The findings also indicate that it matters less what institution is attended, rather than the field of study, with respect to ROI. Read this article
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