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Issues/Categories selected:  Access   Adult Learning   Completions   Distance Education/Technology   Diversity   Faculty Issues   


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Degree Production Trends by Program Area: A National Analysis 2004-2009
SHEEO Staff, August 2011
The national imperative for increased postsecondary level completions has never been clearer. In order to remain competitive in an ever-changing global market, the United States must produce an educated workforce; one that is ready to lead and inspire a 21st century economy.

Recognizing this urgency, the President, several foundations, policy organizations, and states recently set bold college completion goals:

• President Obama called for the U.S. to be first in the world again in college attainment by 2020.

• Lumina Foundation for Education set a national goal for 60 percent of Americans to have a high-quality degree or credential by 2025.

• The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation aims to double the number of low-income adults who earn a postsecondary degree or credential with genuine value in the marketplace by age 26.

• Complete College America, along with their Alliance of 24 states, set a national goal that six out of 10 young adults in the U.S. will have a college degree or credential of value by 2020.

Since last year, the State Higher Education Executive Officers have added to the public dialogue with the release of a series of reports, including trends in national degree production and costs related to postsecondary completions and sub-baccalaureate certificate and degree growth. This report is a follow-up to Degree Production and Cost Trends: A National Analysis, released in August 2010.
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Staffing Trends in Public Colleges and Universities
Katie Zaback and SHEEO Staff, May, 2011
Staffing makes up a large portion of budgets at all institutions of higher education and high quality staff is an essential component of quality education. Given the current context, it is important for systems and institutions to understand current staffing patterns so they can make informed decisions for efficient resource allocation. Current literature in higher education that examines staffing patterns focuses on the distribution of full-time and part-time instructional staff and the composition of staff types (or roles) at colleges and universities. This analysis examines trends in both these areas over time and by Carnegie classification for public colleges and universities.
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Certificate Production and the Race toward Higher Degree Attainment
SHEEO Staff, December 2010
Since the current economic recession began, the national dialogue on degree production and accountability has accelerated. The conversation is fueled by a national imperative for robust postsecondary degree production in order to remain globally competitive. In order to track the progress made by states and their postsecondary institutions, the State Higher Education Executive Officers released the Degree Production and Cost Trends report, in August 2010, as the first part in a series examining degree and completion production and related education expenses.

Complete College America and FutureWorks conducted an analysis of certificate production, the value of the certificate program, and the economic benefit it provides to the region and nation. The conclusion, based on labor market demand and both personal and economic returns, is that certificates count and the policy and trends around certificates deserve closer examination.

The following report is a follow-up that focuses on certificate production across the states and serves to answer some of the important questions raised in the first iteration:
• What trends can we observe in certificate production?
• Are there different state factors driving results?
• What are the policy implications of a state’s certificate production?

To answer these questions, this analysis presents an overview of certificate production in the United States, the types of certificates driving production, and a comparison to overall
completion production in the states. The overall goal of this report is to create a context for state policy discussion and stimulate challenging questions about completion data and certificate production.
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Degree Production and Cost Trends Report
August, 2010
The international imperative for postsecondary education is growing, and the push for state and national action is acute. To remain globally competitive, the United States must expedite efforts to further develop a well educated citizenry. In an effort to provide a context for state policymakers and institutional leaders, this report presents an overview and analysis of trends in degree and completion production, cost per degree and completion, and enrollment in public higher education. This report is the first in a series aimed at providing information to states that will help identify pertinent issues, challenges, and opportunities related to degree productivity.
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Network News: Focus on Technology's Impact on Postsecondary Education
June 2004
This issue provides an overview of technology's impact on postsecondary education. Particular attention is paid to recent studies looking at distance education and access. We start with a recent report from NCES that provides current national estimates on the amount of distance education taking place at 2-year and 4-year institutions. The following article discusses how technology can affect access to postsecondary education. Next we provide a summary of a report from a recent SHEEO and WCET study that looked at the goals, functions, challenges, and outcomes of statewide virtual college/university (VCU) consortia.
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Virtual College and University Consortia
by Rhonda Martin Epper and Myk Garn, August 2003, $10.00, DocID: 27118
During fall 2002 and spring 2003, SHEEO and WCET supported the National Virtual College and University Study, which surveyed 51 virtual college and university consortia across the U.S. The report examines critical developments in state and systemwide distance learning consortia from the founding of these organizations to the present. Key issues covered in the study are organizational and financial models; attainment of statewide goals – such as increasing access and serving underserved populations; emerging student participation patterns; and the role of consortia in resolving policy on behalf of distance learners. Finally, implications are drawn that can provide direction for policy leaders on the future of virtual college and university consortia.
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Adult Learners and State Policy
by Richard A. Voorhees and Paul E. Lingenfelter, February 2003
This study reviews the participation of adults in postsecondary education and outlines policies and strategies states can use to enhance the capacity of their workforce.
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Network News: Focus on Finance Policy, Access, and Affordability
April 2002
This issue examines issues related to finance policy, access, and affordability. A commentary by David Longanecker sets the stage and instructs us about why finance policy is important. Following that article is a summary of national studies on the cost of postsecondary education and the impact of student financing on access, and then an analysis by Michael Mullen, who examines changes in accounting standards and reporting mechanisms over time and their impact on state budgetary analysis.
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Network News: Focus on Higher Education Faculty
December 2000
The quality of higher education in this country rests on the quality of college and university faculties. How this essential resource is developed and utilized affects both the effectiveness and efficiency of the enterprise as well as the quality of life in the broader society. This issue of Network News explores the subject of postsecondary faculty, examining issues and resources for policymakers.
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State Perspectives on Higher Education Faculty Issues
by Alene Bycer Russell, July 2000, $15.00, DocID: 26630
From November 1999 through March 2000, SHEEO surveyed state Chief Academic Officers to identify the faculty issues that are of most importance in the states and the ways in which these issues are being addressed at the state level. Forty-five states and Puerto Rico responded. This report presents information from the faculty survey, including summary tables and detailed state-by-state appendices.

Network News: Focus on Web Resources for Postsecondary Education
June 2000
In this issue, Network News provides a review of several electronic resources available to data analysts and research professionals. This issue presents some general resources and looks in depth at a couple of developing resources and also describes the growing number of electronic tools that are available on the NCES web site and web resources on current federal initiatives.
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Diversity in Higher Education: An Action Agenda for the States
by Esther M. Rodriguez, June 1999, $18.00, DocID: 26276
This report describes policy actions that impact affirmative action from several states represented at two meetings jointly sponsored by SHEEO and The College Board in the fall 1998. It describes recent lawsuits, voter referenda, and higher education board policies that challenge or eliminate affirmative action programs. It also examines state initiatives to strengthen diversity, including strategic plans for diversity, early outreach, need- and merit-based student aid and state scholarship programs, teacher education, communications strategies, research studies, and strategies to involve business leadership. Building on state efforts, the report outlines a collaborative SHEEO/College Board commitment to develop a national research agenda and plan of action to ensure equal opportunity to higher education for all citizens and greater success for underrepresented students of color in postsecondary degree programs.

The portion of this report which details state activities is now available online:

Recent Policy Developments Affecting Diversity in Postsecondary Education Programs
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State Policies for Distance Education: A Survey of the States
by Rhonda Martin Epper, March 1999, $10.00, DocID: 26245
"State Policies for Distance Education" is based on the results of a national survey conducted during the summer of 1998. The purpose of the survey was to identify trends and changes in state policy in light of the increasing number of degree programs that are being delivered through distance education technology. In this report, tables and text cover such topics as state planning documents (with links for those available on the web), academic policy, course sharing, virtual universities, funding policies, student technology fees, legislative funding initiatives, data issues, and performance measures.

The Public Policy Implications of a Global Learning Infrastructure
by Robert C. Heterick, James R. Mingle and Carol A. Twigg, 1998, No Cost, DocID: 25653
"The Public Policy Implications of a Global Learning Infrastructure" contributes to the ongoing debate about how states and their systems of higher education should manage the transition to a global learning environment. Part I describes the impact of information technology on society and on the environment in which higher education operates. In Part II, there is a discussion of the public policy implications of the global learning infrastructure.

Vision and Reality for Technology-based Delivery Systems in Postsecondary Education
by James R. Mingle, December 1995, $5.00, DocID: 16187
In an overview of the issues facing institutions and state systems, the author describes a variety of scenarios for technology-based instruction and outlines an emerging vision for postsecondary education in the 21st century. Technology's contribution to an unbounded, relevant, affordable system of postsecondary education is presented along with the "necessary prerequisites" needed to achieve this vision. The paper concludes with a discussion of the important public policy questions facing states with technology-based delivery systems.

Computers for All Students: A Strategy for Universal Access to Information Resources
by Mark Resmer, James R. Mingle and Diana Oblinger, November 1995, $15.00, DocID: 16212
This report examines the various aspects of applying technology to today's education challenges from a policy perspective and documents some of the best field practices based on institutional case studies. Computers for All Students advocates putting a computer in the hands of all students as well as providing 24-hour access to a computer network. The report provides a rationale for universal access to technology resources plus options for financing the strategy as well as required institutional support structure and other prerequisites for success and implementation approaches.

Negotiating Faculty Productivity: The Montana Case
by Richard A. Crofts, September 1995, $10.00, DocID: 26876
In 1993-94 the Montana University System was restructured into two universities (University of Montana and Montana State University), each with three four-year campuses. Negotiating Faculty Productivity is a case study on the efforts within the System to bring about new kinds of learning environments and improvements in learning productivity by means of collaborative collective bargaining with faculty unions and a similar approach on non-unionized campuses. The report details the history and results of the negotiations, as well as the challenges faced by the University System Office after agreements were reached with faculty. The author traces the impact of the negotiations on political and public perceptions, especially in the face of major legislative cuts.

Access Through Distance Education: Collaborative Ventures in West Virginia
by Bruce C. Flack and Sue Day-Perroots; and The Maryland Interactive Distance Learning Network by Ronald A. Phipps and David Sumler, November 1994, $10.00, DocID: 13968
Flack and Day-Perroots present the distance education structure and collaborative projects that are delivering higher education to West Virginians. The report details the history of distance education in the state, legislation that created the new projects, costs and financing, and results. In the second paper, Phipps and Sumler provide insights in Maryland's Interactive Distance Learning Network which will link all public colleges and universities and all public high schools through a state-of-the-art, full-motion interactive video network.

Doing More With Less: Approaches to Shortening Time to Degree
by Cheryl D. Blanco, November 1994, $10.00, DocID: 16192
In response to a SHEEO RFP on the issue of "doing more with less," the author provides an overview of national data on time to degree, influencing factors, and suggests several strategies for shortening time to degree.

A Case Study of Faculty Workload Issues in Arizona: Implications for State Higher Education Policy
by Stephen M. Jordan and Daniel T. Layzell, November 1992, $8.00, DocID: 6311
The authors review the results of a recent system-wide study of faculty workload in Arizona and discuss the implications for state policy. The financial implications of using current teaching loads as they expand the system are substantial and Jordan and Layzell suggest alternatives to this research university model of faculty productivity.

An Agenda for Reshaping Faculty Productivity
by Richard B. Heydinger and Hasan Simsek, November 1992, $8.00, DocID: 6565
Heydinger suggests that a substantially different model of faculty work is needed to respond to the demands of the future. After reviewing the historical transformations of faculty work, the author suggests that reward systems in other occupations have relevance to faculty incentive systems. He proposes, for example, that tenure guarantee a "base" salary only, and that faculty be expected to earn supplements for the achievement of individual and organizational goals.

Faculty Work and the Cost/Quality/Access Collision
by James R. Mingle, October 1992, $5.00, DocID: 6564
James Mingle suggests eight recommendations for managing faculty resources within his discussion of the relationship between faculty workload and the cost of, quality of and access to higher education.

The Dynamics of Academic Productivity
by William F. Massy and Robert Zemsky, March 1990, $10.00, DocID: 2543
This report consists of three parts. First, William Massy describes a conceptual model of the forces that drive up the costs of academic departments. Following is a brief reaction to Massy's model by Robert Zemsky. The final portion consists of a dialogue between members of the SHEEO Committee on Financing and Accountability, Massy and Zemsky on incentives for faculty.

A Difference of Degrees: State Initiatives to Improve Minority Student Achievement
by the Task Force on Minority Student Achievement, July 1987, No Cost, DocID: 789
After an exploration of the educational environment of minority students, this report addresses how to improve their collegiate achievement by helping to define the role of the SHEEO in the development of a solution and encouraging SHEEOs to make a commitment to minority student achievement through the implementation of a comprehensive plan.

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