Walmart U

| June 9, 2010

As mentioned in the Higher Education Sky is Falling post, rates of enrollment an for-profit institutions is rising rapidly. One big concern about for-profit institutions is degree devaluation. Questions are being raised about the quality of education being “sold” at or-profit universities such as the American Public University (aka the Walmart of Higher Ed). APU’s nickname may soon be official; on June 3 the university has partnered with Walmart to offer degrees to the superstore’s employees. Walmart employees will “receive credit—without having to pay for it—for job training in subjects like ethics and retail inventory management”. A few comments on the article highlighted that degree devaluation isn’t the worst thing that can happen, it’s the disservice to the employees that is the most troubling.

“My concern for individuals in these programs is that they are not getting the education that they need and desire. There is abuse and neglect at these online institutions. This needs to be addressed and remedied before large corporations feed these online programs.There is a time, place, and curriculum that can benefit students. We just need to make certain that we do not lower the bar when interacting with students and that we stimulate thought with the students, rather than nonsense.”

Ethical considerations aside, if you have some spare change the APU stock prices are on the rise according to the Market Watch.