I think the price of “recognized and certified” higher education is ridiculous. Some years back, college administrations admitted that they were cutting back on the number of mandatory classes offered each semester, despite growing student enrollment. That meant that the courses would only be offered certain times of the year; miss signing up or not being able to get in to one that’s already over-booked, you were stuck for another year trying to get that course to finish your degree. This policy meant it was taking five to five and a half years to get a “four year” degree and it was going to cost you more money to finish your degree.
Now they’ve just jerked the price up to where all your money is spent on the “basic” courses and so you can’t afford the specialized courses for the graduate degree studies -- or you can spend the rest of your working career trying to pay back what should have been an entrance fee to higher earning and learning.
I still think they need to go back to the original CLEP tests, where you paid $50 for the whole battery (now it’s like $45 per subject and you can only take two tests every six weeks or something – anything to drag it out and get money) and could earn up to 15 credit hours toward a degree in a single sitting, English, Math, Physics and I forget what else. But you could get your two-year degree in a year or less. And it meant you didn’t have to take courses in things you were already proficient in just to go to the next level of the program.
We’re pricing our population right out of advanced degrees and working diligently to discourage critical thinking, invention and design. I think it’s interesting that cursive writing and all other basic brain/learning enforcement techniques are being discarded. We’re definitely working toward a culture of hyperactive, attention-deficit, impulsive monkey people who can neither read a novel without pictures nor solve a problem without a HELP button.
Eventually, those of us folks who can read and write proficiently will become like the scribes of old. People will hire us to write letters and poetry and to read documents and record business transactions for a general population that is wholly and completely illiterate.
It’s true I think education is a privilege. I just never believed that in the USA , it would become solely for the privileged.