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Learning Resources

Where planning comes together. T​he power of SCUP is its community. We learn from one another, sharing how we’ve achieved success and, maybe more importantly, what we’ve learned from failure. SCUP authors, produces, and curates thousands of resources to help you prepare for the future, overcome challenges, and bring planning together at your college or university.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
April 6, 2022

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 3

Different Conditions Require a Different Kind of Planning

Higher education has faced major changes for some time—COVID-19 accelerated that volatility—and now we’re anticipating the demographic downslope in student enrollment. How and when should institutions mobilize for the difficult work of planning in the face of wrenching change?

From Volume 50 Number 2 | January–March 2022

Abstract: Part 1 of this series described a major contraction in the pool of college-going 18-year-olds that will reverse decades of growth and stability for higher education. Part 2 explored how we can shape a planning context that supports success in the coming 10 or 20 years. Part 3 suggests how our approach to planning must shift to prepare for abrupt change.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
March 17, 2022

Book Review: Higher Education Business Models Under Stress

Achieving Graceful Transitions in the Academy

From Volume 50 Number 2 | Jan–Mar 2022

Abstract: Higher Education Business Models Under Stress: Achieving Graceful Transitions in the Academy
by Melody Rose and Larry D. Large
AGP: Washington, DC: 2021
140 Pages
ISBN: 978-1-951635-12-1

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
December 15, 2021

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 2

Turning Away from the Challenge Is the Riskiest Strategy of All

Higher education has faced major changes for some time—COVID-19 accelerated that volatility—and now we’re anticipating the demographic downslope in student enrollment. How and when should institutions mobilize for the difficult work of planning in the face of wrenching change?

From Volume 50 Number 1 | October–December 2021

Abstract: Part 1 of this series described a major contraction in the pool of college-going 18-year-olds that will reverse decades of growth and stability for higher education. Drawing on the path-breaking analysis of Carleton College economist Nathan Grawe, it outlined how widespread but variable the change will be, and discussed some of the effects—on enrollment, revenue, facilities, staffing, and more—for which colleges and universities should be preparing. This Part 2 explores these implications: How can we shape a planning context that supports success in the coming 10 or 20 years? What attitudes and skillsets will remain useful, and what may need to change?

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
September 17, 2021

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 1

Prepare Now for the Challenging Times Ahead

A long-term decline in birth rates raises fundamental planning questions for higher education as the pool of 18-year-olds contracts after 2025. How can planners and leaders use the time we have to prepare for some of the most wrenching changes in a generation?

From Volume 49 Number 4 | July–September 2021

Abstract: A long-term decline in birth rates raises fundamental planning questions for higher education as the pool of 18-year-olds contracts after 2025. This Planning for Higher Education series explores how planners and leaders can use the time we have to prepare for some of the most wrenching changes in a generation. This article, Part 1, surveys the planning horizon as we emerge from COVID-19 and describes the challenges ahead. Part 2 considers specific planning strategies institutions can adopt to meet the challenge. Part 3 tackles perhaps the most daunting challenge: how to mobilize institutions to actually do what needs to be done, however inconvenient (or worse) that may be.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 12, 2021

The Role of Community Colleges in Future-proofing Education

In this session, we’ll share how community colleges can use metrics to understand long-term projections around regional enrollment needs and use human purpose integrated design to build for the future.
Abstract: With the cost of education skyrocketing, institutions must address the demographic cliff for future generations of learners. Community colleges offer important lessons regarding educational offerings across a diverse background and recognize how workforce development can inform campus planning and design. In this session, we'll share how community colleges can use metrics to understand long-term projections around regional enrollment needs and use human purpose integrated design to build for the future.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
November 9, 2020

Trends in Accreditation

How Will Accreditors Once Again Become Relevant for Higher Education?

Dr. Lynn Priddy answers questions posed by education writer Stephen G. Pelletier related to changes in accreditation and their effect on institutions and students.

From Volume 49 Number 1 | October–December 2020

Abstract: Having been on both the inside of regional accreditation and outside looking back on it, Lynn Priddy knows that accreditation has long tried to revolutionize itself, while at the same time increasingly becoming subject to federal regulatory burdens and expectations from the Department of Education. That has backed it into becoming a bureaucracy at the very time it needed to break out to focus on innovation, learning, and student success.

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Webinar Recordings

Published
June 26, 2020

Voices from the Field: Episode #16

Helping Vulnerable Students Meet Basic Needs

From The Hope Center at Temple University, Paula Umaña discusses caring and communication: the need to identify your most vulnerable students, then ensure that available assistance is visible and easy for them to access.
Abstract: Students need more than hand sanitizing stations and plexiglass. They need their basic needs addressed. Many college students are part of a vulnerable population with a fragile hold on basic needs like housing, food, and transportation. Temple University’s Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice compiled an extensive set of resources for institutions to use to assist students in locating and applying for necessary aid.

In this episode, The Hope Center’s Paula Umaña discusses caring and communication: the need to identify your most vulnerable students, then ensure that available assistance is visible and easy for them to access..

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
May 15, 2020

Reduce Curriculum Costs While Increasing Student Enrollment

Optimizing Academic Balance Analyses Let Kentucky Institutions Stay Competitive

Results of the study supplied evidence needed to support tough institutional decisions. The 13 Kentucky colleges and universities that participated in the research now have critically important data to use in making choices about how they best serve their students, maximize scarce resources, and sustain financial stability.

From Volume 48 Number 3 | April–June 2020

Abstract: An Optimizing Academic Balance (OAB) analysis provides colleges and universities with effective tools to use in making strategic academic decisions needed to stay competitive in the context of institutional mission, program quality, market potential, cost, and revenue. The Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities recently completed a three-year statewide OAB project with the participation of 13 higher education institutions. The results supported the colleges and universities in making tough decisions.


A Follow-Up

An introduction to the Optimizing Academic Balance process and early results of the research were published in the 2015 Planning for Higher Education article, “Reshaping Your Curriculum to Grow the Bottom Line,”. The current article, with final research data, represents the study’s wrap-up report.

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Conference Presentations

Delivered
March 8, 2020

2020 North Atlantic Regional Conference | March 2020

Canaries in the Demographic Coal Mine

The Impending Enrollment Crash

We'll discuss the demographic decline, institutions already affected, and proactive strategies for addressing it (already undertaken by some).
Abstract: Higher education enrollments have trended downwards for each of the last eight years and are poised to enter a decade-long freefall. This demographic decline will force institutions to confront a new structural reality, including an unprecedented wave of downsizing, mergers, and even closures, but only a handful of institutions have begun to respond proactively. A deeper understanding of the enrollment crash is essential. We'll discuss the demographic decline, institutions already affected, and proactive strategies for addressing it (already undertaken by some).

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
October 1, 2019

If Tuition Rises . . .

. . . Does Racial and Ethnic Minority Student Enrollment Plummet?

When the cost of American higher education goes up, access to economic opportunity, social mobility, and positive academic outcomes are, subsequently, restricted for students of color. Campus admissions and retention planning professionals are first witnesses to the inequality.

From Volume 48 Number 1 | October–December 2019

Abstract: This article explores the impact of tuition increases on student retention and higher education admission and retention planning for racial and ethnic minorities. Research shows that the racial and ethnic minority student population on campus is negatively affected by tuition increases. Literature is examined for potential impacts of tuition increases on a student’s decision of school choice. And although literature provides little in the way of recommendations for resolving the issues associated with tuition increases, this article offers some suggestions for student retention planning.

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