The College Puzzle Blog
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Dr. Michael W. Kirst

Michael W. Kirst is Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University since 1969.
Dr. Kirst received his Ph.D. in political economy and government from Harvard. Before joining the Stanford University faculty, Dr. Kirst held several positions with the federal government, including Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Manpower, Employment and Poverty. He was a former president of the California State Board of Education. His book From High School to College with Andrea Venezia was published by Jossey Bass in 2004.

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My blog discusses the important and complex subjects of college completion, college success, student risk factors (for failing), college readiness, and academic preparation. I will explore the pieces of the college puzzle that heavily influence, if not determine, college success rates.

Why is US Declining in World Rankings on Higher Education Access and Completion?

Professor John Aubrey Douglass has written a good analysis of trends in Us higher education in the magazine , California, June 2008. As the first nation to implement mass higher education US led in most in access and college completion. But we have held steady while other nations increased and surpassed USA. USA slipped from 1 to 14 in post secondary participation rates and from 1 to 16 in completion rates.
A major cause is better policies by our competitors over many years, but the major causes says Douglass is the breakdown in the k-12 pipeline to higher education, costs increases in postsecondary, immigration growth, and the high use of community colleges in US. The completion problem is focused in broad access US higher education which is the focus of this blog.

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