There are far too many students in colleges.

<p>Charles Murray, one of the co-authors of the Bell Curve, has released a new book not too long ago. In it, he argues(based on solid facts and statistics) that most college students are not fit for college and worse, people who have talents in other areas get told that they are 'failures' if they don't go to college, which leads them to neglect their talents partially or sometimes wholly.</p>

<p>Here's the interesting bite. The College Board did quite some extensive research a few years back where the premises were these:</p>

<li>A 65 % chance of graduating college after four years</li>
<li>Maintaining a GPA average of 2.7(or higher) in their freshman year</li>

<p>They found that out of the the total amount of 18-year olds being capable of doing this in the United States was a mere 10 %(if looked at it very optimistically, he claimed it could be even 15 % at the very max). </p>

<p>The cutoff SAT score would be 1180(M+CR). Thus, because almost 50 % of the U.S. population in the ages of 18-22 are in 4-year residential college at some point chasing a B.S. or a B.A., the fact is self-evident that there are far too many students in our colleges. If you're lazy and don't want to read the book but you're fine with a short video then here's one:</p>

<p>Charles Murray is a living contradiction. He got his bachelors degree in history. How useless is that? Murray likes to make money selling books. He has a shallow view of the purpose of education.The problem isn't with the post-secondary educational system. </p>

<p>There are plenty of community colleges for those who don't want a bachelors.</p>

<p>He misinterprets statistics. Draws spurious conclusions.</p>

<p>As the number of people increase throught out the world. . . Competition will become fierce and with outsourcing raging like madness. . . The future doesn't look so pretty. </p>

<p>Yes, many American students are unfit for college coming out of high school, but thats becuase many teachers don't care anymore. Now we have US Software corporations telling us that American students are crap compared to the Chinese and Indians (I have nothing against them, everyone has to fight to survive), when actually they hire them because they can pay them lower (I mean REALLY LOW) wages (I blame the corporations). I know this is really off topic. . . sorry it just bumped into my head. lol </p>

<p>Yes the number of students in colleges are increasing. Common sense. Here's something for you guys to think about: What are you going to do about it? Your future is at stake. It may sound like I'm exaggerating but I am not. You have to do your best in college. Let me repeat. YOU HAVE TO DO YOUR BEST IN COLLEGE IF YOU WANT TO SUCEED OR AT LEAST MAKE IT THROUGH LIFE. You have keep getting better at english, because let me tell you something. The Indians aren't sleeping through their english courses in high school. They are hungry to suceed and know America is going to help them, because America is slowing turning its back on its own citizens. What happened to the tax break that President Obama promised to take away from the companies that offshore their positions?</p>

<p>Nowadays, it isn't enough to get a B.S. For more job oppurnities, you have to get a Master's degree. I don't know if you got the point but if you did not: Read the CAPS above^^^</p>

<p>@collegehelp: getting a bs in history may be useless, however, history teachs you many things. "Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it". (George Santayana)</p>

<p>It's always interesting how guys like this can decide that other people don't deserve to go to college. They're never the ones who aren't good enough to even consider higher education; it's always someone else's son, someone else's daughter. </p>

<p>The most logical part of his argument was when he mentioned that people who don't need to go to college to do what they want are being pressured to anyway. Certainly, college isn't the only avenue towards social mobility or financial security and it's wrong to insist that someone cannot succeed without a 4-year degree. However, it is equally silly to suggest that we should push higher-education even further out of reach for 90%+ of Americans; the only result of that can be economic stagnation and decline. There are lot of problems with our education system, but the answer isn't to make them worse.</p>

<p>I haven't read his book or looked at he linked video. However, I can report from a large corporate perspective that while a college degree may not be critical, the ability to write and think clearly (they are really connected) <em>is</em> critical. If a 900 SAT (2-part) scorer wants to further develop his/her ability to think clearly, perhaps even scientifically, then more power to them. If this occurs in a community college, so much the cheaper.</p>

<p>As to trades, I agree in principal that many who go on to college might be better served to learn a trade like plumbing, retail vending, construction, appliance repair, accounting, landscape architect/gardener, teaching (unfortunately this requires a college degree.. but I'm not sure why it must) and most any trade that is not easily outsourced to another country. If the trade is easily outsourced to China, India, Singapore (like website design is now), fagettaboutit, it won't pay well.</p>

<p>I do think people need to stop thinking about college as a necessary continuation of high school. It is a luxury, and many cannot afford it. Businesses would be well served to rethink whether a college degree is a job requirement as well, or they just perpetuate the cycle. Businesses out to have simple reading, writing, speaking tests that determine a person's abiliity to function well on the job into which they're hired, not a diploma.</p>

xxSTEELxx wrote: "Yes the number of students in colleges are increasing" . Quick tip... whenever you see a prepositional phrase, "of students" in this case, remove it from the sentence for a second to see the subject verb agreement.. in this case, "Yes, the number IS increasing", then plug the PP back in and continue :)</p>

<p>If one accepts the premise that the percentage of the population that is capable of true university-level work is less than the percentage of the population that is actually enrolled in university, then it follows that there are people enrolled in university who are not capable of true university-level work.</p>

<p>However, the admissions processes of the university system are such that students are sorted into universities based on academic ability. Simply put, relatively strong students are likely to attend higher-tier institutions, while relatively weak students are likely to attend lower-tier institutions.</p>

<p>It follows that the students who are not capable of true university-level work are usually not attending higher-tier universities. They are likely to be attending lower-tier universities.</p>

<p>Could this fact be part of the reason for the emphasis on attending elite universities in today's society? Employers and others can be convinced that someone graduating from a higher-tier university is truly capable of university-level work. Below a certain level, they cannot be so convinced.</p>

<p>The problem is that while academic ability is a prerequisite for attending a higher-tier university, it is not sufficient. Talented students often have to attend middle-tier or even lower-tier universities for financial or other reasons. The problem is that the degree so earned is tacitly understood not to represent true university-level work, despite the student having the ability to do true university-level work.</p>

<p>As such, the system where almost anyone can earn "university" degrees which are tacitly understood not to represent true university-level work puts many people, especially low-income students, at a disadvantage.</p>

<p>Murray is not a communication genius. Whenever you hear him talk, or for that matter, read him(I've read the Bell Curve), you get a sense of a cranky old man. He may just be that, but he's still pretty spot on on a lot of things.</p>

<p>We've somehow made this system where everybody has to be an academic, even if it doesn't fit them. The implicit message is that it is "better" to be graduating with an average sociology degree than doing excellent in a plumber's vocational school. </p>

<p>Most jobs don't need more than 2 years of academic preparation, the rest should be learnt on-the-job. Exceptions to this are lawyers, doctors and other high-end professions which are complex. But how many people have the capacity of being a doctor? Less than 10 % of the population, probably closer to 5 %(IQ 126).</p>

<p>This leads the underclass, as well as the lower-middle class to pursue a college degree which many of their children cannot handle(except the exceptional children) and wasting tens of thousands of dollars. An upper-middle class family can do the same mistake, but at least they can take the financial hit.</p>

<p>If we could just stop neglecting vocational school, increasing the status and tone when we're talking about non-academic professions, it would save America billions each year as well as make a better country where people are doing what they know best and can handle, instead of everyone becomming a wannabe-academic. </p>

<p>I think it's hard for many that read this thread to understand the scope of the problem, because as if you're reading this you are almost surely either a grad of college or thinking of becomming one, which puts you automatically (far) above most of the population. Add to that, CC population tends to be smarter than most college students too. </p>

<p>It's easy to sit and spew egalitarianism(however well-meaning), when it doesn't affect you, causing financially stressed families to invest in often useless educations for the children who cannot handle the level, nor have any particular talent or interest in the subjects. Let the mechanic be the mechanic. Let the hairdresser be the hairdresser and all those other's who (too often, but not always) get told that what they do 'has no future' and that they 'must go to college'.</p>

<p>This also, with the risk of sounding like an elitist, impedes those who DO belong in college as the quality of the classroom experience drops, it's harder to get in, schools get more and more crowded and teachers have spend time explaining very basic things to students who shouldn't be there, whilst those who do need real help have to wait much longer and are hindered in their growth.</p>