With the US Congress working towards the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, there's been much discussion as to what should be done relating to accreditation and it's relationship with access to Title IV (Federal financial aid programs). Today's Inside Higher Education included this brief. Please pay attention to the highlighted text relating to outcomes and accreditation. As, we have said, this is the age we live in and we need to be able to accurately and clearly tell our story when it comes to student learning and the value of a UT education:

Broad Coalition's Goals for the Higher Education Act

(available at https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2015/11/04/broad-coalitions-goals-higher-education-act

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 - 3:00am

A coalition of 12 organizations, including New America, the Business Roundtable, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Center for Law and Social Policy, on Wednesday released a set of shared principles for policy makers to consider in the run-up to the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, the law that governs federal aid programs. While the groups have different takes on many issues in higher education, they said the current formulation of the law does not meet the needs of students for high-quality, affordable and relevant educational opportunities.

The groups described seven principles: outcomes are what matter, federal financial aid policies need to be more flexible, higher education needs to do more to connect learning and work, accreditation processes need to be more transparent and rigorous, quality assurance processes should focus more on programs and credentials, policy should encourage innovation and experimentation, and that the Higher Education Act should be better coordinated with other federally funded education and training programs.

"Reauthorization offers the chance to renew our country’s commitment to higher education for all who seek it," they wrote, "while also helping institutions adapt to the fast-paced, technology-driven global economy that their students will face at graduation."

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