Over the last decade there has been a shift in focus by regional post secondary school accrediting agencies to require colleges and universities to demonstrate how their programs positively impact there students after graduation. The term used to identify this type of activity is “student outcomes”. In my opinion the reason parents and students decide to get a post secondary education is to improve the students chances of getting a good paying job. As a result the ultimate student outcome to track would be how well students graduating from university fair at getting a job after graduation. A number of for-profit institutions publish this type of student outcome information publicly. Unfortunately, as the article below notes, many traditional universities have fought against reporting this type of information during the last decade. But things may be changing. Recently a group of educational institutions have taken a small step forward by agreeing to publish their students results on standardized tests designed to measure how much they have learned during their education. They haven’t decided to report how well their graduates fair in getting a position after graduation but it is an important first step down that path.
The willingness of a university or a department to provide student outcomes information should be taken into account when making the final choice of which college and program to attend. In my opinion, its availability and quality speaks volumes about the attention the department/program pays to careers in its field and its attention to the welfare of its students after graduation. Parents and students don’t have to wait for a program to decide to produce this information. They can ask for it during the orientation. Please feel free to reference the article below when you do.