ETS on Millennials

A fascinating report on international education and job-ready skills from the Educational Testing Service. Particularly so, as it almost directly impinges on committee work that I've been doing lately. Core findings:
  • While U.S. millennials have far higher degree certifications than prior generations, their literacy, numeracy, and use-of-technology skills are demonstrably lower.
  • U.S. millennials rank 16th of 22 countries in literacy. They are 20th of 22 in numeracy. They are tied for last in technology-based problem solving.
  • Numeracy for U.S. millennials has been dropping across all percentiles since at least 2003.

See the online report here.


Causes of College Cost Inflation

From testimony at Ohio State (link):
  1. Decreased state funding
  2. Administrative bloat
  3. Cost of athletics
(Thanks to Jonathan Scott Miller for the link.)


Pupils Prefer Paper

You may have already seen this article on the work of Naomi S. Baron at American University: her studies show that for textbook-style reading and studying, young college students still prefer paper books over digital options. Why? Because of reading.
In years of surveys, Baron asked students what they liked least about reading in print. Her favorite response: “It takes me longer because I read more carefully.”...

Another significant problem, especially for college students, is distraction. The lives of millennials are increasingly lived on screens. In her surveys, Baron writes that she found “jaw-dropping” results to the question of whether students were more likely to multitask in hard copy (1 percent) vs. reading on-screen (90 percent).

Read the article at the Washington Post.


Academically Adrift Again

One more time, as we've pointed out here before (link), in this case from Jonathan Wai of Duke University: "the rank order of cognitive skills of various majors and degree holders has remained remarkably constant for the last seven decades", with Education majors perennially the very lowest of performers (closely followed by Business and the Social Sciences). 

See Wai's article and charts here.