Can we afford universities?

Students take 14 years to pay back their student loans according to this Financial Post article, and that is after the tax-payer has paid for the larget part of the tuition fees. How efficient are universities at delivering their knowledge? If students were given the opportunity to acquire their degree by being tested on what they knew and could do, and if they were encouraged to acquire their knowledge wherever and however they wanted, how many would choose to take on 14 years of debt? I would certainly explore other ways of acquiring the necessary knowledge. 

6 thoughts on “Can we afford universities?

  1. I studied at BCIT for a year completing 4 terms. 2K per term * 4 = 8K. Rent, food and other regular expenses cost at least 1K per month * 12 = 12K. All together 20K plus another serveral months for job hunting. So I wouldn’t say that tuition is expensive. Living is expensive. I used 2 years of my savings to study one year. If it would be four year program then thinking about spending 8 years of savings makes me doubt the reasonability of it.HR managers don’t test you on skills or knowledge. They only ask "soft" questions: "What’s your strength?", "What’s your weaknesses?" etc.

  2. BCIT, BC Institute of Technology is probably more relevant than much of what is taught at university. And if you can accelerate your learning that is great. Interesting comment re HR managers.

  3. Hey Steve, The question you pose is also the subject of a TEDx Talk by Scott Young. He finished the equivalent of a 4 year MIT Computer Science degree without ever stepping foot in the school and only incurring 1% of the cost. http://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/mit-challenge/As I am attending university now I think this is a very interesting question. Can more cost and time efficient methods be developed?

  4. The situation of education cost in US are much worse. Federal government backups student loans, so every one can borrow money to go colleges, but there are no incentives for college to charge less. So the price of college tuition went up like sky rocket. Now total amount of student loan in US are bigger than credit card loan! This is one of last bubbles which have to be burst in some time soon. Compering the level of cost and knowledge you are getting, I think I can say that the most of colleges are scams. Many students can not find jobs after their graduations. To start own your business is much better way to learn "real" knowledge in the real world.

  5. That’s exactly the problem I am facing now, this loan will just pile up over time and getting a high paying job after leaving university is not guaranteed in fact the chances are not very high. In my country the loan bureau is having problems because people are not paying back their loan years later and still can’t afford it.

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