Higher Education: Resources and Finance

By Seymour E. Harris | Go to book overview

170 POINTS BY WAY OF SUMMARY AND EMPHASIS

COST TRENDS (Chapter 1)
Rise of Expenditures. Over a period of sixty to seventy years, educational and general expeditures for higher education have risen much more than gross national product, the best measure of the size of our economy.
Expenditures Corrected for Prices. Since the price of higher education has risen much more than general prices, the gains of education vis-à-vis GNP are not so great as they at first seem.
The Lag of Unit Expenditures. But the rise of expenditures per student has not nearly matched that of per capita income. Hence the standards of higher education have not risen pari passu with those of the economy.
Gains a Maximum without Inflation. On a per student basis the largest gains seem to come in periods of growth, without inflation--e.g., in the 1920s.
Why Costs per Student Rise. Continued rises in per unit costs in stable dollars over this period of sixty to seventy years--despite the trend toward low-cost education and the increased size of the unit, a factor tending to reduce costs--may surprise many. Among the explanations are the rising standards in the economy which spill over to higher education through competition for goods and services, the difficulties confronting higher education in matching productivity gains in the economy, the rising proportion of students in the upper two years and graduate work, and the change in the product--e.g., the use of expensive equipment, provision of health, social activities, research.
Recent Gains in Expenditures and Needs in the 1960s. We need rises of 140 to 150 per cent in expenditures in the 1960s. At the rate of rise (in stable dollars) from 1950 to 1958, it will take twelve (not ten) years to achieve our objectives.

THE 1970 BUDGET (Chapter 2)
How Much? Operating expenses in 1960 dollars should require $9 to 10 billion as compared with around $4 billion in 1960. Rise of enrollment, increased pay levels, and matching the rise in the standards of the economy are especially relevant.
Where Will the Money Come From? I suggest a large absolute increase from all sources, but especially from government and tuition, and a

-xxi-

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