Welcome to the Syllabus, a guide that provides insight into what’s happening in higher education.
Dan Berrett, The Chronicle of Higher Education
Are seminars the remedy to freshman dropout rates? According to advocates, seminars can keep students engaged and enrolled. To better understand the freshman seminar, a Chronicle
reporter visited the University of Richmond
and attended six classroom sessions of three seminars and wrote about the experience. At Richmond, all freshmen are required to take a “First-Year Seminar” in each of their first two semesters. This seminar articulates a common set of learning goals, such as, improving student’s skills in writing, speaking, and critical thinking. Seminars can be an effective method of instruction and counseling as there tends to be a low student-to-faculty ratio. Although this can be a desirable classroom experience for students, it is yet to be determined if it’s the best method.
Cory Weinberg, The Chronicle of Higher Education
On Thursday July 25th
, North Carolina passed HB 589
, which prohibited the use of college IDs as a valid form of identification at voting polls. The Republican-led North Carolina General Assembly argued this is one way to combat voter fraud, while Democrats believe it clearly targes student voters, who tend to vote largely Democratic.
Critics of the new bill argue college students often have permanent residences out of the state or they do not have a North Carolina driver’s license. In addition, college students are also more mobile. “They have to register more often, so students are often at the front lines of those decisions even when its not intentional,” according to Justin Levitt, an associate professor of law at Loyola Marymount University’s law school, in Los Angeles
Lauren Ingeno, Inside Higher Ed
Many students enter law school with the intention of securing a job in the legal field and high salaries upon graduation. Unfortunately for graduates from 2006 to 2010, this was not often the case. On Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals of the Sixth Circuit
dismissed a lawsuit brought forward by 12 former Thomas M. Cooley Law School
students. The plaintiffs alleged Cooley misrepresented the percentage of graduates who obtained employment in legal fields after graduation and the average starting salaries for those jobs. The court said the suit’s interpretations of employment statistics were not proof that the figures were untrue.
Cooley has one of the lowest admissions standards of any accredited law school in the country, according to the U.S. News & World Report.
Jesse Strauss, the attorney who filed the plaintiff’s case stated that although he was disappointed by the outcome they, “Wanted to alert potential law students that getting a degree from a place like Cooley is not a good idea.” This year the American Bar Association
has imposed stricter standards for law school employment and salary data reporting.