Lessons from the Edge: For-Profit and Nontraditional Higher Education in America

Hardcover | January 30, 2005

byGary A. Berg

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The importance of for-profit higher education becomes clear when one examines the state of higher education today. Traditional institutions are facing major pressures, including diminishing financial support, a call to serve adult learners, the need to balance applied and liberal arts curricula, and the need to maintain and evolve the institutional mission. Stakeholders are more numerous than ever before, and they are pulling institutions in different directions. Traditional institutions of higher education are increasingly pressured to alter the their missions because diminished public funding has resulted in dependence on donors and corporations with varied interests. This strain is causing universities to behave in new ways. For-profit institutions provide a model of how to handle these challenges by their very structure-they are organized to operate professionally as a business and continually question and refine their organizational mission.They are constructed specifically to meet the needs of adult learners, and the core of their mission-to help adult and traditionally underserved students-is constant and clear. This book grew out of research linked to the Good Work Higher Education Project, which, since 1995, has been investigating how individuals are able to carry out "good work" in their chosen professions when conditions are changing at unprecedented rates. Good work is work that is at once of high quality, socially responsible, and fulfilling to the worker. Berg argues in this book that good work by this definition is occurring at nontraditional institutions, including some of the for-profits.

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The importance of for-profit higher education becomes clear when one examines the state of higher education today. Traditional institutions are facing major pressures, including diminishing financial support, a call to serve adult learners, the need to balance applied and liberal arts curricula, and the need to maintain and evolve the ...

GARY A. BERG, Dean, California State University, Channel Islands, and author of four books, including ACE Higher Education Series book, Why Distance Learning?, and numerous articles on current issues in higher education.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:232 pages, 9.71 × 6.51 × 0.85 inPublished:January 30, 2005Publisher:Rowman & Littlefield PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0275982580

ISBN - 13:9780275982584

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Introduction: Building "Educational Hobo Jungles"? Chapter 2 Soft in the Middle: Current Challenges in Higher Education Chapter 3 The Surprising Story of For-Profit and Non-Traditional Higher Education in America Chapter 4 Missions: Who Are You? Chapter 5 Junkyard Dogs: The Culture and Rhetoric of For-Profits Chapter 6 Organizational Structure: Managers Not Administrators Chapter 7 "Creative Tension": Decision-Making Process at For-Profit Universities Chapter 8 Faculties Chapter 9 Challenges for the For-Profits

Editorial Reviews

The structure of the book lends itself to a variety of uses and users. Its straightforward, nontechnical style will appeal to the general reader, and its well-organized survey of higher eduation issues will prove useful to the student. A rather controversial topic, the subject of the book will be intriguing to faculty. Finally, the author's background as a university administrator contributes to his point of view and generates additional interest for higher education personnel. Berg's constructive attitude is refreshing. The message is that we can consider nontraditional providers of higher education, not as inferior competitors, but as unique institutions specializing in what traditional higher education providers are not yet able to deliver: truly universal access to postsecondary education. By learning from nontraditional schools, we can better our understanding of our current challenges. And by furthering our understanding, we can improve.