July 5, 2012

PAUL RAHE: Grade Inflation & Accreditation in Higher Education. “The accreditation system was originally set up by colleges and universities with an eye to separating the sheep from the goats so that parents could have some idea of what they were getting into. The federal government had nothing to do with it. But the old order was hijacked a long time ago, and in the process yet another instrument was created for the micro-management by the federal government of entities that would not otherwise fall under its jurisdiction. The maneuver is simple. To get federal funding, a school must be accredited, and to get accreditation they must meet certain standards. There are two things wrong with what goes on. The first is that the accrediting agencies are worse than useless. They are extremely intrusive and demand all sorts of data that the institutions must assiduously collect; they systematically ignore the deep-seated corruption that besets our colleges and universities; and they make everyone, including those of us who teach in the classroom, jump through ridiculous hoops.”

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