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Report Spotlights Public Opinion on the Value of a College Education

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While employers largely value a college education, not all Americans agree.

A research brief from the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) and the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) compares employer and public views about the return on investment in a college education. While nearly nine in 10 employers answered that a college degree is worth the personal investment, only 60% of Americans agree. Dr. Kevin Miller The AAC&U conducted its survey of employers last year. Those results were combined with BPC’s survey together with (national polling company) Morning Consult of 2,200 randomly selected individuals administered in March 2021. The report noted that there is a general consensus among employers that the time and money invested in a college education are worthwhile. In contrast, the public survey showed considerable divergence of opinions, hence the report’s title, “Is College Worth the Time and Money? It Depends on Whom You Ask.”

Seventy-three percent of respondents to the public survey who had earned a bachelor’s degree and 74% who had an annual income in excess of $100,000 believed the investment to attain a college degree is worthwhile. That compares with just 51% of respondents who do not have a college degree and 52% of […]

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