Apr 24, 2021
"Very expensive and elementary process"
Gray Associates provided a program by program demand for our institution. They met with senior leaders multiple times. Actual current program data was provided by the institution, while demand for the program was provided by Gray Assocs. Faculty reviewed the data provided by GA and then had to justify their existence in less than a page. GA rated each program based on the contribution of undergraduate tuition dollars brought into the institution by the program. However, this elementary analysis falls short for several reasons. First, some graduate level courses are taught concurrently with undergraduate courses, meaning that the institution only has to pay the instructor for one class, though graduate tuition is being paid at the graduate level. This affect is not even across programs. Some graduate programs do not have concurrent classes, some programs don't have graduate courses. As such, faculty in programs that teach concurrent graduate and undergraduate students are at a disadvantage from this elementary analysis since their program's tuition dollars are under counted. Second, this calculation also ignores expensive equipment needed to run some program. Biology and Chemistry programs are super expensive because of the need for lab space and equipment. In general, at most institutions where tuition is the same regardless of major, liberal art students subsidize the cost of education for science students, particularly those requiring lab work. In the end, I would expect a more sophisticated analysis for a higher ed program demand product.