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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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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 will consider specific planning strategies institutions can adopt to meet the challenge. Part 3 will tackle 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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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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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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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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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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Delivered
July 14, 2019

2019 Annual Conference | July 2019

Paying the Price

College Affordability and the Impact on Students: Why, How, and What Now

Award-winning researcher and author Sara Goldrick-Rab communicates a transformational vision for higher education in America that stresses affordability and access for all, especially lower- to middle-income students and first-generation college students.
Abstract: Financial stability is critical to success in college. The new economics of college create conditions of poverty for many students. It’s an outdated assumption that if a young person works hard enough, they’ll be able to get a college degree and be on the path to a good life. That’s simply not true anymore.

Points of entry to higher education are increasingly out of reach. Increased enrollment of lower- and moderate-income students coupled with inadequate employment opportunities and high college prices mean that making ends meet while attending college can be very difficult. In fact, a growing body of evidence suggests that a previously unnoticed challenge has emerged: basic needs insecurity. Goldrick-Rab’s seminal research provides a better understanding of the complexity and the urgency of the crisis that many students face. She communicates a transformational vision for higher education in America that stresses affordability and access for all, especially lower- to middle-income students and first-generation college students.

Sara Goldrick-Rab is best known for her innovative research on food and housing insecurity in higher education, having led the three largest national studies on the subject, and for her work on making public higher education free. She is the recipient of the William T. Grant Foundation’s Faculty Scholars Award and the American Educational Research Association’s Early Career Award, and in 2016 POLITICO magazine named her one of the top 50 people shaping American politics. Her latest book, Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid, and the Betrayal of the American Dream (University of Chicago, 2016), is an Amazon best-seller and a 2018 winner of the Grawemeyer Award, and has been featured on The Daily Show With Trevor Noah. The Chronicle of Higher Education calls her “a defender of impoverished students and a scholar of their struggles,” she is ranked 6th in the nation among education scholars according to Education Week, and in April 2018 the Carnegie Corporation awarded her the Carnegie Fellowship.

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Published
April 1, 2019

An Analysis of Instructional Expenditures in U.S. Public Higher Education

From 2004 Through 2015

Results indicate that, when adjusted for inflation, instructional expenditures at U.S. public institutions increased from 2004–2015; however, evidence suggests that the rise was more modest and less consistent than may be known.

From Volume 47 Number 3 | April–June 2019

Abstract: Due to the rising price of tuition, the prevailing narrative regarding higher education is that the cost of delivering a college degree is increasing substantially. However, the cost of delivering an education is not definitively linked to the price in tuition paid to attend. Prior studies confirmed small increases in instructional expenditures per full-time-equivalent student from the 1980s to 2000; however, more recent trends in instructional costs are relatively unknown. The purpose of this study was to track instructional expenditures from 2004 to 2015 at U.S. public two-year and four-year institutions, and to calculate those expenditures as a proportion of U.S. Gross Domestic Product.

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