Thanks for the good words, David!
Belmont’s pitch — enroll here, design your own curriculum, and keep having fun! — is a perfect encapsulation of trends in American higher education. It has become mostly a credentialing business. Now that we’re awash in people with BAs, the ratchet is moving up to master’s degrees and doctorates. Colleges and universities are milking the artificial demand as much as possible.
But I must register a small dissent. I don’t think I do or can own the “college has been oversold” line. David Levine and Michele Boldrin have convinced me that we’d be better off without monopolies on intellectual property. I reviewed their book Against Intellectual Monopoly here. (Scroll down to the last review in the issue.)