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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 16, 2010 / 6 Elul, 5770

A new way to compare colleges

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It is generally true that you get what you pay for, but not necessarily when it comes to higher education.

A study scheduled for release Monday about the value of a college education, at least when it comes to the basics, has found the opposite to be true in most cases. Forget Harvard and think Lamar.

Indeed, the Texas university, where tuition runs about $7,000 per year (Harvard's is $38,000) earns an A to Harvard's D based on an analysis of the universities' commitment to core subjects deemed essential to a well-rounded, competitive education.

In other words, Lamar requires courses that Harvard apparently considers of lesser value. These include six of the seven subject areas used in the study to gauge an institution's commitment to general education: composition, literature, foreign language at the intermediate level, U.S. government or history, economics, mathematics, and natural or physical science.

Harvard has comprehensive requirements for only two of these subjects -- composition and science.

The study was conducted by the nonprofit American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) to help parents and students determine where they might get the best bang for their buck. It was timed to coincide with the release of U.S. News and World Report's annual evaluation of the "best" colleges and universities, which is based primarily on various statistical data, reputation and prestige.

ACTA focused its efforts on requirements as a measure of what an institution actually delivers. Anne Neal, ACTA president, is quick to point out that the grading system doesn't tell the whole story about an institution but does offer a crucial part that has been missing.

On a user-friendly Web site, "What Will They Learn?" (http://www.whatwilltheylearn.com), which is being updated on Monday, visitors can compare the major public and private universities in all 50 states. Of the 714 four-year institutions reviewed, more than 60 percent received a grade of C or worse for requiring three or fewer of the key subjects. Only 16 received an A, among them: Baylor University, City University of New York -- Brooklyn College, Texas A&M University, the U.S. Air Force Academy, the U.S. Military Academy, the University of Arkansas and St. Thomas Aquinas.

In other findings, public institutions are doing a relatively better job than private schools of ensuring that students receive basic skills and knowledge -- and at a considerably lower price. But both public and private universities are failing to ensure that students cover the important subjects, notably economics and U.S. government or history.

Among the reasons for this void in "the basics" is that many professors prefer research to teaching, and course content often reflects that. There's no paucity of subjects to choose from, which is part of the problem. More courses equals more expense equals higher tuition. The question is whether the offerings are of any value.

At Emory University, for example, to fulfill a "History, Society and Culture" requirement, students may choose from about 600 courses, including "Gynecology in the Ancient World." At the University of Wisconsin at Madison, a "Humanities, Literature and Arts" requirement may be met by taking an introduction to television. Neal, herself a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, doesn't dispute that these may be excellent classes. "But the question being asked is whether this is the only exposure a student is getting when going to university."

Students given so many choices aren't likely to select what's good for them. Given human nature, they'll choose what's fun, easy or cool -- and not early in the morning or on Fridays. It's up to universities to guide them away from the dessert tray to the vegetable courses they need to develop healthy minds. Neal says that colleges have abdicated that responsibility.

"It's ludicrous to take an 18-year-old and give them hundreds of choices when they don't have any basis for making a decision."

At a time when the cost of higher education is increasingly prohibitive -- and emphasis tends to focus on status -- students and parents can find solace in the possibility that a better education can be found in one's own back yard. This doesn't necessarily mean that a student at Lamar will learn more than one at Harvard. As some argue, intellectually motivated students indeed may find what they need anywhere. And students properly guided may fail to absorb what is offered.

But the study and Web site do fill a gap so that parents and students can make better choices. As a consequence, colleges and universities may be forced to examine their own responsibility in molding an educated, well-informed citizenry.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Kathleen Parker can be reached by clicking here.

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