What's College For? The Struggle to Define American Higher Education

Synopsis

With spending for it topping $175 billion a year, rican higher education is poised to upstage healthcare and welfare as the national issue. Zachary Karabell offers a surprising look at what students get for their money in this exhaustively researched yet accessible book.

The crucial clash on campuses, Karabell claims, is not between traditionalists and multiculturalists, but between faculty and students. The problem: most students are working-class people seeking education to get a better job, while most faculty members are products of graduate schools that insulated them from the needs of real-world people. The solution: democratization of higher education, which requires a dramatic change in social structure and al presumptions about education beyond high school. Sure to spark intense debate, What's College For? should do for the 1990s what Illiberal Education did for the 1980s.