Robert Kelchen

Robert Kelchen, a professor of education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is data manager of the Washington Monthly College Guide.


Is This America’s Coolest College President?

With a few exceptions (such as the eternal leader Gordon Gee, now at West Virginia University), college presidents generally have a reputation for being a stoic, bland bunch of people. Given their job duties of managing a large business enterprise, raising funds, and dealing with often-cantankerous faculty members and students, college leaders rarely have a… Read more »

Higher Ed 2013’s Not-Top 10

Yesterday, I put out my top-ten list of higher education policy and finance issues from 2013. And today, I’m back with a list of not-top-ten events from the year (big thanks to Justin Chase Brown for inspiring me to write this post). These are events that left me shaking my head in disbelief or wondering… Read more »

The Year of Higher Education Policy in Review

As 2013 draws to a close, it’s time to take a look back at some of the biggest happenings (or non-happenings) of the year. Some of these items would have been on the list for several years, but others (including the top happening of the year) are brand-new for 2013. Enjoy the list! 10. There… Read more »

Don’t Dismiss Performance Based Funding Research

Performance-based funding (PBF), in which at least a small portion of state higher education appropriations are tied to outcomes, is a hot political topic in many states. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures and work by Janice Friedel and others, 22 states have PBF in place, seven more are transitioning to PBF, and… Read more »

Associate Degree Recipients are College Graduates

Like most faculty members, I have my fair share of quirks, preferences, and pet peeves. While some of them are fairly minor and come from my training (such as referring to Pell Grant recipients as students from low-income families instead of low-income students, since most students have very little income of their own), others are… Read more »