Deep Dive

Industry insights from our journalists


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    How will the rise of AI in the workplace impact liberal arts education?

    Experts predict that skills like critical thinking and creativity will be more coveted as artificial intelligence replaces some technical jobs. 

    Danielle McLean • July 8, 2024
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    ‘We can’t cut anymore’: Can colleges recover from the gut-punch of inflation?

    Cost growth in higher ed is easing after big spikes in recent years. But institutions remain under steep financial pressure.

    Ben Unglesbee • July 1, 2024
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    ‘Like climbing up Mount Everest’: Financial aid professionals describe a grueling FAFSA season

    Staff faced long hours and pressure due to frequent delays and technical glitches, leaving them frustrated and exhausted. 

    Danielle McLean • June 27, 2024
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    Inside the final, chaotic days of Goddard College

    Founded as a radical experiment in education, the Vermont institution closed after years of mounting tensions between administration and the rank and file.

    Ben Unglesbee • June 7, 2024
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    What’s next for the test-optional movement?

    Yale, Brown and Cornell universities have all revived their testing requirements, raising questions about whether other institutions will follow suit.

    Danielle McLean • May 20, 2024
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    Dartmouth College is investing $500M to become a sustainability leader. Will others follow?

    The Ivy League institution is overhauling infrastructure to improve efficiency. But there are other ways to lighten a campus’s environmental impact.

    Ben Unglesbee • May 16, 2024
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    Back from the brink, Hampshire College is nearing financial viability

    In the past five years, the college recommitted to its mission, raised funds and revamped its curriculum. Experts say others can learn from its playbook. 

    Danielle McLean • March 20, 2024
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    Some HBCUs are seeing enrollment surge. Here’s why.

    Leaders experiencing head count increases attribute them to a racial awakening, student success efforts and new funding. 

    Danielle McLean • March 19, 2024
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    As states drop degree requirements, does a 4-year diploma’s value change?

    Although new policies are propping up workers without degrees, experts say higher education will continue to play a role in hiring decisions and pay rates.

    Danielle McLean • Feb. 8, 2024
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    3 state policy trends that will shape higher ed in 2024

    Lawmakers have set their sights on restricting diversity, equity and inclusion and eliminating degree requirements for government jobs.

    Laura Spitalniak • Jan. 30, 2024
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    Retrieved from Colorado State University on January 09, 2024
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    Unpacking the fallout from the MOVEit meltdown

    Third-party vendors exposed some colleges — including public flagships and liberal arts schools — to multiple breaches during the mass hack. 

    Matt Kapko and Julia Himmel • Jan. 18, 2024
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    7 higher education trends to watch in 2024

    Colleges will likely grapple with continued consolidation, the rise of artificial intelligence and more attacks on diversity, equity and inclusion.

    Jeremy Bauer-Wolf • Updated Jan. 8, 2024
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    Colleges want to move away from expensive textbooks. Can it be done?

    West Texas A&M University is one of the latest institutions exploring using more open educational resources. 

    Danielle McLean • Dec. 18, 2023
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    Why more colleges are adopting direct admissions

    The practice — which notifies students that they’re admitted before they even apply — is taking off at public systems and some private institutions.

    Lilah Burke • Dec. 11, 2023
  • Academic cuts loom at UNC Greensboro. Faculty question whether they’re needed at all.

    The North Carolina college is gearing up to drop degree programs, though one analysis found it’s in sound financial shape.

    Jeremy Bauer-Wolf • Dec. 4, 2023
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    ‘Affirmative action for well-off students’: Why early decision is under fire

    Scrutiny over the practice heightened after the Supreme Court struck down race-conscious admissions earlier this year. 

    Lilah Burke • Nov. 27, 2023
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    Legacy admissions remains in the spotlight. But accurate data on the subject is elusive.

    Institutions sometimes report conflicting information about legacy status, complicating research efforts while debates on college access intensify.

    Jeremy Bauer-Wolf • Nov. 14, 2023
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    "Fletcher Hall at Sweet Briar" by Annette Teng is licensed under CC BY 3.0
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    More colleges are resetting tuition. Does the strategy work?

    Some institutions have seen short-term enrollment gains from slashing their sticker prices, but the strategy doesn’t guarantee a turnaround.

    Danielle McLean • Oct. 9, 2023
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    Ohio Republicans to push revised bill limiting college DEI and faculty strikes

    The author of the far-reaching proposal is optimistic it will pass the House, despite strong pushback from faculty groups and unions. 

    Laura Spitalniak • Sept. 13, 2023
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    Why colleges are using algorithms to determine financial aid levels

    The practice can help colleges optimally distribute their limited resources, but it could also cause issues for students and even create legal risk.

    Lilah Burke • Sept. 5, 2023
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    "FAMU#4" by 2C2K Photography is licensed under CC BY 2.0
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    Can the farm bill help fix underfunding for HBCUs?

    Lawmakers have until the end of September to reauthorize the spending package, which is a significant source of funding for land-grant universities. 

    Lilah Burke • Aug. 25, 2023
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    Should colleges use AI in admissions?

    Companies are eager to help colleges use AI to streamline admissions, but the practice raises ethical concerns. 

    Lilah Burke • July 18, 2023
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    MOVEit mass exploit timeline: How the file-transfer service attacks entangled victims

    The slow-moving disaster has ensnared some of the world's largest enterprises. Cybersecurity experts expect further damage to come.

    Matt Kapko • July 17, 2023
  • U.S. President Joe Biden, joined by Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, speaks on student loan debt in the Roosevelt Room of the White House August 24, 2022 in Washington, DC.
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    Alex Wong via Getty Images
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    Here’s why the Education Department’s proposed financial transparency website has higher ed worried

    The agency pitched the new site, which will host information on every higher ed program, as part of its gainful employment regulations.

    Lilah Burke • July 5, 2023
  • Protesters gather outside of the U.S. Supreme Court building to urge justices to preserve race-conscious admissions.
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    Supreme Court rules against race-conscious admissions at Harvard and UNC-Chapel Hill

    The recent opinion was unsurprising for college access advocates who had nonetheless urged the high court to keep with decades of precedent.

    Jeremy Bauer-Wolf • Updated June 29, 2023