The quality of college isn’t completely evident during freshman orientation. People overwhelmingly only get one undergraduate degree, so colleges and universities don’t have to worry as much about satisfying repeat customers. And there are more than two parties to the transaction. There’s a student and a college, sure, but there is also the student’s parents, and the government, and even the student’s future employers. Those all end up mattering for the financing of the product in question. It’s a really, really messed up market.
The main signal that you can use is price, and in particular sticker price. The theory is schools that cost more will deliver a better education. That means schools have a real incentive to push up tuition for its own sake. And if the Bowen theorem is right, once tuition goes up, so too does spending, making it harder for the effect to be undone.
« Older Somewhere in-between the space-age bachelor pad so... | Why You Can't Travel Back in T... Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments
Buy a Shirt