Thursday, January 18, 2007

College is over-rated

Charles Murray thinks fewer people should go to college and I agree, though maybe for different reasons.

There are two competing forces at work. Tuition costs continue to climb faster than inflation, making college far more expensive. Meanwhile thanks to technology, alternatives to college keep getting cheaper and higher quality. If you just want to learn about, say, anthropology, the content you get from today's Internet sites (like MIT's Open University) is much higher than what you find at many (most?) colleges. By the way, note that there are interactive sites too, where you do get the one-on-one feedback that's supposedly important about the college experience.

One point Murray makes that I thought was interesting: craft trades (like carpentry) are going to be in more demand, making the old journeyman system of apprenticeship more appealing. These are not low-paying jobs, and they can't be off-shored.

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