Missouri reviewing its 4,000 college degree programs

Monday, September 13, 2010 | 10:03 a.m. CDT; updated 11:35 a.m. CDT, Thursday, October 7, 2010

JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education is beginning a study of college degree programs to see if some should be eliminated.

Missouri has about 4,000 academic programs at public higher education institutions.

The state review is aimed at identifying bachelor's degree programs that average fewer than 10 graduates a year, master's programs that average fewer than five graduates a year and doctoral programs that average fewer than three graduates a year.

The Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education has authority to approve new degree programs but not to eliminate them.

Department spokeswoman Kathy Love says the review's findings could be used by college and university administrators to make their own decisions about continuing the degree programs.


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Ellis Smith September 13, 2010 | 11:02 a.m.

Four thousand (4,000) degree programs. Amazing! Wouldn't it be interesting to see an alphabetized list. Scanning that list could produce some belly laughs as well as some anger ("They're awarding a degree for THAT?")

BTW the rule of an average of ten (10) graduates a year might eliminate Petroleum Engineering (MS&T), the BS degree which commands the highest starting salaries in UM System. Mining Engineering might also be affected. Those two programs are programs that the federal government considers essential. (We certainly wouldn't want to upset the federal government, would we?)

But not to worry, because the toothless tiger called Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education has no means of enforcing their rules, and UM System can selectively ignore them.

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith September 14, 2010 | 2:11 p.m.

Who is qualified to conduct this study? Must it only be attempted by PhDs? (Soothsayers, perhaps.) Is there a concrete goal, such as reducing the number to 2,000? Why was the number allowed to grow to 4,000 in the first place?

(Report Comment)

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