Archive for Sunday, December 5, 2010

Regents to get first crack at admission standards

December 5, 2010


— Eighth-graders, listen up.

The Kansas Board of Regents is considering tougher academic admission standards to get into a public university.

If approved, the standards would not go into effect for four years to give schools time to adjust their curriculum to fit. So that means today’s eighth-graders could face a higher hurdle when they start college.

The proposal has been in the works for two years, and will have such a wide-ranging impact that the regents plan to consider the matter over two meetings. The first will be on Dec. 16, then again in January.

“This is something that hasn’t been done in a while,” said Regent Janie Perkins of Garden City. It would make sense to carry the issue for two meetings, she said.

Currently, to get into Kansas University or any other regent university, a student must either complete a pre-college curriculum, get a 21 or higher on the ACT, or rank in the top third of their graduating high school class.

Under the proposed change, completion of a pre-college curriculum or Kansas Scholars curriculum with at least a 2.0 grade-point average would be required and then either an ACT score of 21 or higher, combined SAT score of 980 or higher on math and critical reading, or rank in the top third in the graduating class.

Oh, and individual state universities may ask the regents for approval to implement even more stringent standards. Kansas University is currently looking at setting higher standards.

The aim of the proposed standards is to admit students who are better prepared for college, and increase graduation and retention rates.


davidsmom 7 years ago

This is good news. Based on what I am reading in the Chronicle of Higher Education, freshmen arriving on campus ill-prepared for college-level work is a problem nationwide except at IHE's that have very high admission standards. There is an increasing need for remedial classes so freshmen can "catch up" to where they should have been at the end of high school, and all this remediation is expensive not only for the institutions that are facing continually decreasing state appropriations, but for families who have to pay for classes that don't count toward a degree. I know everyone hates the idea of testing, but if potential freshmen had to pass a test to see if they could do college-level work, a lot of them would start out at community colleges instead of the more expensive four-year colleges or universities. There is a number of reasons why kids manage to graduate high school unable to handle college work, but we can't fix them all at once. Increasing admission standards at public universities is one thing we can do.

voevoda 7 years ago

The costs of ill-prepared students go beyond the expense of remedial courses, for both the students that take them and for the university that provides them. Because admission standards are low, too many students can't succeed in their courses. They enroll, pay tuition, and then end up dropping the courses later in the semester to avoid low or failing grades. That wastes their money, as well as the state appropriations that paid on their behalf. It also means that they won't be able to graduate on schedule, so they pay tuition and room and board for more years. A longer period in school means, often, more debt upon graduation. It also means fewer years of full-time employment, and so less retirement income. Once all that is calculated in, better K-12 education is worth the financial investment.

Scott Morgan 7 years ago

K-12 schools are a mess. We need to overhaul the sausage factory. My opinion has me leaning towards the structure Kansas City Missouri is testing. No grades, emphasis on learning sequences.

Not in the sense of holding kids back, but the converse.

gbulldog 7 years ago

I agree that the admission standards need to be raised. It is a waste of money and time for colleges to accomodate students that are inadequately prepared (accademically and emotionally). The problem of inadequately prepared students can be blamed on how K-12 operats, lack of parental involvement, high school students working after 8:00 PM, "political correctness", hormones, etc..

Another problem is gender. What has happen in our education system to boys. Why are they disapearing from classes both in high school and college.

To fix the problem the State needs to develop a "prep" school system. This system needs to include training not only in academics but in the "social graces" of the "business world".

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