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Is College Tuition Really Too High? By A. Davidson Essay


In his article “Is College Tuition Really Too High?”, Adam Davidson discusses such a trend as the rising cost of education in the United States. The author provides statistical data showing that many families find it more difficult to afford tuition fees (Davidson par. 2). These expenditures have increased dramatically relative to the median income of households (Davidson par. 2). This tendency can be observed in both private and public educational institutions. According to available estimations, these costs have increased by approximately 500 percent (Noack par. 1). Overall, it is crucial to identify the underlying causes of this problem and review possible solutions. One should also evaluate the arguments put forward by Adam Davidson. Much attention should be paid to the relevant questions that are not thoroughly discussed in this article.

This journalist focuses on the factors that can contribute to this trend. In particular, the writer notes that public funds are usually transferred to the most prosperous classes of the community. In contrast, people, who represent lower classes, receive a very small share. For instance, the author states that students, who attend private schools, can receive $25,000 from the state (Davidson par. 27). In contrast, learners, who go to “non-selective public schools”, get approximately $13,500 (Davidson par. 27). Thus, one should pay attention to the inefficient distribution of public funds. The only limitation is that Adam Davidson does not specify the sources that he uses to make his arguments.

One should bear in mind that some schools are very selective. They focus on the students who have the highest scores. Moreover, these learners can better meet the requirements set by these educational institutions. As a rule, they attend either public or private schools that employ the most skilled and competent educators. However, many children are deprived of this opportunity. Thus, these learners may lack the knowledge and skills that are required for the successful performance in very selective public schools.

Therefore, many talented students will not be able to work with the best teachers. Furthermore, Adam Davidson discusses various mechanisms that contribute to the rising cost of education. For instance, one can refer to the increasing prices of textbooks. Finally, the writer notes that the investment in higher education can be justified in the long term. In particular, a person, who receives at least a graduate degree, is more likely to become a taxpayer. Currently, many students believe that college administrators have to justify the reasons why they raise tuition fees. Very often, they do not involve student associations in decision-making (Anderson par. 10). Thus, this problem requires the cooperation of different stakeholders such as college administrators, economists, and legislators.

Adam Davidson gives many significant insights that are necessary for explaining the increasing costs of higher education. Nevertheless, the writer does not consider other important factors that exacerbate this problem. One should examine the deficiencies in the functioning of educational organizations. For instance, Paul Campos notes that the governmental expenditures on higher education have increased considerably during the last three decades. However, tuition fees have not become more affordable to learners (Campos par. 10). In turn, the author notes that educational organizations have become more bureaucratic. Much attention should be paid to the increasing number of college administrators (Campos par. 10). This author does not reject the necessity to invest in public education. Nevertheless, he insists that state-funded universities should make an efficient use of the resources that are available to them (Campos par. 10). This issue is not sufficiently discussed by Adam Davidson in his article, but this detail should not be overlooked by policy-makers.

Furthermore, one should note that some rules existing in colleges can make the cost of education much higher. In particular, in some cases, many first-year students are required to live on campus. The problem is that they do not have the opportunity to pay the price of a campus dorm (Douglas-Gabriel par. 2). Many of them can find less expensive apartments outside the campus. Thus, it may be necessary to re-evaluate some of the existing procedures because they can have an adverse effect on many students whose income level is not very high. The problem is that they often encounter bureaucratic barriers that have no rationale.

Journalists also note that the problem of rising costs becomes more complicated due to the challenges that learners face after their education. In particular, these individuals cannot raise their status in the society, and their annual income does not exceed $ 25.000 (Selingo par. 10). Therefore, one can argue that the rising cost of tuition may not be perceived a significant problem if college graduates can always derive substantial benefit from their education. The key problem is that in many cases, they do not receive any significant rewards. So, it is important to study the macroeconomic environment of the United States.

In my opinion, Adam Davidson convincingly demonstrates that it is necessary to make education more affordable. However, the author does not discuss a broad range of strategies that can be used to address this issue. At first, one should consider the measures advocated by Paul Campos, who believes that is necessary to cut administrative expenses. At the same, journalists discuss the plan that is intended to refinance student loan programs (Healy par. 1). This policy can minimize the problem of students’ debts. Provided that college administrators and governmental officials cannot cope with this problem, a greater number of American learners may decide to study abroad. For instance, they may prefer German universities in which tuition fees are smaller (Noack par. 2). Moreover, it is necessary to consider the policies adopted in various European countries because in this way, one can find efficient approaches to the problem of increasing tuition fees (Noack par. 2). Thus, one should not overlook the best practices that have been applied in different countries.

Overall, this discussion indicates that the rising cost of tuition is one of the critical problems for the American society. If this issue is not addressed, a considerable part of young adults will be denied access to higher education. As a result, they will not be able to raise their social status. However, it is important to understand the mechanisms that contribute to this tendency. For instance, one should not overlook the detrimental impacts of bureaucracies existing in educational organizational and governmental institutions.

Apart from that, one should not forget about the ineffective redistribution of wealth. The key issue is that policy-makers should not regard these expenditures as a burden. More likely, these expenses should be viewed as the investment in the future of American people. Moreover, these funds are essential for promoting the economic growth of the country. One can argue that Adam Davidson’s article can help a person get a better idea about the main trends affecting the economy of higher education. Nevertheless, other sources are also useful for understanding various factors that increase the cost of tuition.

Works Cited

Anderson, Nick. “U-Va. board approves 11% increase in tuition, fees for in-state freshmen.” The Washington Post. Washington Post, 2015. Web.

Campos, Paul. The New York Times. New York Times, 2015. Web.

Davidson, Adam. The New York Times. New York Times, 2015. Web.

Douglas-Gabriel, Daniel. “Freshman residency rules sometimes force students to pay prohibitive costs.” The Washington Post. Washington Post, 2015. Web.

Healy, Patrick. The New York Times. New York Times, 2015. Web.

Noack, Rick. “7 countries where Americans can study at universities, in English, for free (or almost free).” The Washington Post. Washington Post, 2015. Web.

Selingo, Jeffrey. “Is college worth the cost? Many recent graduates don’t think so.” The Washington Post. Washington Post, 2015. Web.

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