1st Edition

Postsecondary Participation and State Policy Meeting the Future Demand

By Mario C. Martinez Copyright 2004

    Research shows that all sectors of society, across age and racial groups, consider access to higher education as essential to achieving satisfying employment and a better quality of life. Yet there has been surprisingly little public discussion about recent major changes in higher education access and funding and no policy debate about how to respond to Americans’ growing aspirations about college.This book stimulates debate by presenting research about future demand: changing patterns of postsecondary participation and census projections over the next fifteen years, and their implications for resources and funding.The author disaggregates state data, taking into account states’ individual histories, size, age demographics, regional characteristics and priorities, to show the different policy options available. Rather advancing any particular policy, the author aims to stimulate an informed discussion about alternative strategies to meet demand and increase access. What is the college population likely to look like in 2015? What are the projected patterns for traditional and adult students? What factors will influence enrollment in private or public institutions, or two- or four-year colleges? The authors set their analyses in the context of the public and private benefits of higher education. This volume presents multiple scenarios of future enrollment, and state-by-state comparisons, that are vital for setting priorities and determining the implications of increasing access to higher education.

    INTRODUCTION, Demographics and Policy 1 THE IMPORTANCE OF POSTSECONDARY PARTICIPATION, The Current Picture of Postsecondary Participation Population by Age; Applying Financial Ratio Analysis to Postsecondary Participation; 18-to 24-Year-Olds; 25 and Older; Conclusion 2 THE FUTURE STATE OF POSTSECONDARY PARTICIPATION, 2015 Age Group Populations; Comparison Ratio Changes; Conclusion; 3 LEAVE NO STUDENT BEHIND: EXCEEDING THE STATUS QUO; Benchmark Achievement; Moving Toward Improvement; Baseline Plus; Conclusion 4 FUNDING HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE FUTURE; Enrollment Growth; The Inflation Factor; Future Funding Scenarios; Conclusion 5 STATE POLICY AND HIGHER EDUCATION SUPPLY; Successful State Policy in the Future; Conclusion 6 ALIGNING POLICYMAKER EXPECTATIONS WITH FUTURE DEMAND; Outcomes; Means and Ends; Changing Demographics and Higher Education Policy Achieving Outcomes; Conclusion


    Mario C. Martinez is Vice Chancellor of Strategy and Innovation for the National University System. He has written several books in the area of higher education innovation, strategy and policy. He is a founding partner of SoftSkillsPros.com, a training and resource company serving higher education institutions and the many professionals who work within them. Donald E. Heller is Director, Center for the Study of Higher Education, and Professor of Education and Senior Scientist, at the College of Education, The Pennsylvania State University.

    "Couched in the context of access, the book serves as a tool to assess how each of the fifty states is positioned to meet a projected increased demand for higher education, a demand that is expected to crest around the year 2015…this is a book worth reading for anyone interested in issues of access and state postsecondary education policy. The clear strength of Martinez's book is in its creative use of data, presented in a style free of the kind econometric jargon that sails over the heads of many people. The people who most need to read the book--state policymakers and policy researchers--will find a very accessible discussion of a very salient issue…Martinez offers an approach that is accessible and creative and, best of all, one that provokes further thought and discussion."

    The Review of Higher Education

    "Mario Martinez describes profound structural changes that ensure equally profound changes in American higher education. These structural changes require structural solutions far beyond the grasp of our current political stalemate and retail politics. The question of college access and quality will remain with us because the economic and demographic forces that drive it are relentless. This book tracks both of these forces and raises issues to help those interested in the future of higher education think about the future of access and quality in the states".

    From the Foreword by Anthony P. Carnevale, Vice President, Educational Testing Service