THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON HIGHER EDUCATION
Is it time to reimagine higher education?
MARGUERITE J. DENNIS
BULLETIN # 9 May 18-22, 2020
“No forecast is better than a random guess, because so much can change.”
Ruchir Sharma, Foreign Affairs magazine
JUST THE FACTS
According to the Carnegie Dartlet survey of 2,800 U.S. high school seniors, one-third said they would defer or cancel their college enrollment in the fall if classes
are held only online. 42% said they would not delay enrolling under any circumstances. 95% of the seniors surveyed indicated that they would expect a
reduction in tuition if classes were held online.
Joshua Kim of Dartmouth College and Edward J. Maloney of Georgetown
University surveyed 10,000 U.S. students about their preferences for the fall
semester. 78% of the students surveyed prefer in-person classes; 53% prefer a
combination of in-person and online instruction; 51% prefer a flexible block
schedule; 35% prefer a structured gap year; 23% prefer first-year students to
study on campus and upperclassmen study online; 34% prefer core classes taught
on-campus and other classes online; 28% prefer to live on campus but take classes
online and 12% prefer a delayed start to the semester.
79% said there should be some reduction in tuition for online courses.
Two potential class-action lawsuits against the University of Florida Board of
Trustees have been filed by students seeking refunds for the spring semester
because students were forced to take classes online.
Cambridge University announced this week that all classes will be taught online
until the fall 2021 semester.
Three out of four universities in South Korea expect to continue with remote
learning in the fall semester.
McGill University, the University of British Columbia, and the University of
Montreal will hold classes online for the fall semester.
The University of Manchester will keep all of its lectures online for the fall
The University of Aberdeen is postponing the start of the academic year.
FINANCIAL IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON HIGHER EDUCATION
The Asian Development Bank announced this week that COVID-19 could cost the
global economy between $5.8 trillion to $8.8 trillion.
Several colleges and universities in the U.S. will no longer contribute to
employees’ retirement accounts, either for one year or indefinitely. Johns
Hopkins, Duke, Georgetown and Northwestern are among the school that have,
or will, no longer make contributions to pension funds.
Global Workplace Analytics, a consulting company, estimates that when the
pandemic is over, 30% of the entire workforce will work from home at least a
couple of days a week.
95% of Facebook’s 45,000+ employees are working remotely and Mark
Zuckerberg expects only 25% to be back in the office by the end of the year.
The number of e-meetings increases each week.
Microsoft Teams announced this week its daily active users increased 70% to 75
million participants in just one month.
Google Meet topped 100 million users.
Zoom announced 300 million daily meeting participants at the end of April, up
from 200 million at the beginning of the month.
The CEO of Boeing estimates that it could take 3 to 5 years before travel resumes
to some degree of normalcy.
NAFSA: Association of International Educators, estimates a loss of at least $3
billion due to anticipated international student enrollment declines.
The organization also estimated $1 billion loss due to shortened or canceled
study abroad programs in the spring and summer.
U.S. colleges and universities spent an estimated $639 million in financial support
for international students, scholars, faculty, and staff who remained on campus
when courses were moved online for the spring semester.
The University of California Board of Regents approved a five-year plan to phase
out college entrance exams and replace the SAT and ACT with a new test to be
developed by University of California faculty.
California is the largest single-state market for undergraduate admissions
More than 1,200 U.S. schools have informed applicants that entrance exams will
not be needed for the next academic year.
There are many smiling applicants today because of the decisions made by
colleges and universities throughout the U.S.
A surprising report from the Institute for International Education revealed that
less than 10% of the international students who were enrolled for the spring
semester went home. The rest remained on-campus or somewhere else in the U.S.
There are many international admissions deans reading that report and smiling.
Professor Steve Smith, vice-chancellor and chief executive of the University of
Exeter and chair of the International Policy Network at Universities UK wrote:
“This crisis feels like no other. I honestly think it will change us, and how we
operate, teach, and do research forever.”
I would agree with the vice-chancellor but I also believe that change can be
beneficial and the pandemic has presented higher education with the opportunity
to reimagine how we recruit, admit, enroll, teach, retain, and graduate students.