The magazine article ” The World Might Be Better Off Without College for Everyone” is written by Bryan Caplan in The Atlantic Monthly, Jan/Feb, 2018. This article presents up that for individuals, going to college may be useful, but for the country, universities are wasting resources.Bryan Caplan believes that society offers more salaries to those who are educated than those who have not been to college. However, the colleges can not improve the intelligence and ability to work for students.Bryan Caplan explains two reasons for why he do not support to go to college. On the one hand, the college education is very expensive.
The tuition fees and living expenses of a private university in the United States for one year equal the full income of a medium-sized family. And there is not just a matter of money. People spend four years of precious youth in college, and during these four years they earn nothing and do not create any value for the community. On the other hand, he believes the knowledge people learned in high school and college are unnecessary. If they do not use the knowledge after graduation, it will soon be forgotten. Colleges teach us is the way of thinking.
Educational psychologists find that students who excel in exams always cannot apply their knowledge to the real world. Bryan tested 40 economics students, after four years only four of them really mastered the economic thinking.At the same time, Bryan Caplan points out four reasons for why do more and more people want to go to college nowadays. Firstly, the average wage of college graduates is 73% higher than that of high school graduates, and the gap is still growing. Secondly, data shows people will get higher incomes if they have a higher diploma, but the growth rate for the country’s income is tiny. It means education enriches individuals much more than it enriches nations Thirdly, going to college is for getting jobs that have recently been held by people with less education. A data shows that the average educational level of the jobs increased by 1.
2 times during the 20 years in the US. At last but not least, In the view of economists, the real purpose of attending college is to send a signal to prove that their ability. Bryan specifically mentioned that this “signal” is not related to what the applicant learned in college, it is a way to tell employers that they can pass through four years of hard and tedious courses and knows how to adapt.
However, the undergraduate degree is only valid when others are not as good as you. Finally, Bryan proposed to establish the vocational education which is neglected by the college-for-all mentality today to raise wages, reduce unemployment, and raise the high school graduation rate. If everyone has a college degree, it will cause runaway credential inflation.