Accountability and the Higher Education Reauthorization Act

It looks like the U.S. Congress is getting much closer to passing the Higher Education Reauthorization Act after several years of negotiation and debate. Last week the House of Representatives passed its version of the bill, while the Senate passed a separate version last year. Now the reconciliation process between these two versions of the bill begins in earnest.

Will the reauthorization of the higher education act have an impact on institutional strategy and business intelligence? You better believe it. Among the many proposals that have come up for negotiation in these bills is a provision for the U.S. government to provide grant money to states for the establishment of ‘unit record’ systems for accountability reporting. In addition, new accountability measures have been proposed for inclusion to be reported to IPEDS. These initiatives could have a major impact on the strategies an institution employs in the future. At the very least, the measures by which institutions are evaluated may change and that will require an analysis of the institution’s measurement and reporting systems.

These and many other proposals in the bill have the potential to impact policy decisions at colleges and universities across the nation. To get the word out about the potential impact of this legislation AACRAO is providing a free webinar on Thursday, February 14.

I have worked with Barmak Nassirian, AACRAO’s Associate Executive Director and host of the Webinar, on several occasions and have found him to be knowledgeable about matters of public policy and issues on Capitol Hill. He is joined by two other ‘heavy-hitters’ in higher education so I would imagine this presentation should be very worthwhile.

Look for analysis of this legislation from a higher education strategy and business intelligence perspective on this blog in the coming days and weeks as this legislation moves through congress.