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How to Understand the High Cost of College

By April 15, 2015No Comments1 min read

In a recent (April 4, 2015) opinion essay in the New York Times, “The Real Reason College Costs So Much,” Paul Campos, a law professor, argues that the high cost of college tuition today is solely the fault of the colleges, more caused by administrative bloat than by reduced governmental funding.

This is becoming an all-too-common complaint. In recent years, it has become popular for commentators and politicians on the federal and state levels to complain vociferously about the cost of a college degree. Implicitly — and all too often explicitly, as in the case of Mr. Campos — the allegation is that the colleges somehow are gouging students, profiteering at their expense.

This could not be further from the truth. In my 35 years in higher education at many different colleges and universities, small and very large, I have witnessed colleges do summersaults to try to keep the cost of tuition and expenditures down.

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