Igor wrote:At the root of the problem:
- HR departments use degrees to filter out applications. Sometimes this is appropriate. Other times, it is just expedient.
Businesses will only put up with traditions for so long if they're costly and unproductive. If a degree has no value, we'll see more hiring of people who have skills but no degrees, because those people might be willing to work for a lower wage (younger, no college loans to pay off, etc.).
One possible reason for the degree requirement, is that it's a check box in the "hourly versus exempt" worksheet. By requiring a degree, you can put somebody on "exempt" status, and avoid paying them overtime.
Degree requirements have been malleable in the past. In the early 80's, people were getting hired as programmers, with as little as a semester or two of programming from a community college, or they were even self-taught. I knew a few musicians who got tired of starving, and became programmers.
- It is not in the best interests of a university to let a student get a degree in 3 or 3.5 years instead of 4 or 5.
The easiest way to assist students with loans would be to either figure out how to cut General Degree Requirements, or else more accurately target them to their majors. My 20 credits of Music Appreciation, History, Geography, and Astronomy were easy A's but I'm not sure that they affected my life in any way.
Here, I agree. It might not even be necessary to cut the requirements, but just figure out how students end up on the 5 year plan due to bureaucratic snafu's etc. But once again, businesses could take the lead by adopting a different set of accreditation standards, effectively saying: "You don't need a degree, but your transcript has to show that you completed the following alternate requirements."