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Discussion Guide: Who Gets In and Why

If you’re a teenager, a parent, a high-school counselor, a college admissions officer, or just an interested observer of higher ed, “Who Gets In and Why” tells the story of a year inside college admissions process. To facilitate your discussion of the book in group settings, we’ve put together this discussion guide.

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Which Colleges Are Really Buyers and Which Are Sellers

A new way to think about your college list: the Buyers and Sellers.

While cost is a concern, families have only a hazy idea of what their tuition bill might look like. So they don’t think about the price of college until it’s too late.

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Good Jobs in Bad Times

Rather than play it safe right now, the moment is ripe for colleges and students to cultivate skills that are going to be in demand in the post-pandemic economy. In this paper, Jeff Selingo and Matt Sigelman, CEO of the labor market analytics firm, Burning Glass, lay out 14 the “foundational skills” critical to unlocking millions of jobs.

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Future of the Faculty Office

Even as the layout and design of the modern workplace is reshaped, with open offices, team huddle rooms, and teleworking, the basic form and function of faculty offices on most college campuses remains much as it has for decades, if not centuries. Walk into almost any academic building —whether it is fifty years old or a year old—and you’ll probably see some version of this: long, narrow hallways lined with doors (often closed) to individual faculty offices.

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The New U.

How institutions are differentiating themselves with new business models and why creating a technology-enabled, integrated, customized, and continuous experience throughout the learner lifecycle is so critical.

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Navigating the College Search

NEW, updated for 2023. To help with your college search, Jeff Selingo has put together a two-part guide, sponsored by Corebridge Financial. This free guide breaks down the “where and why” process by helping to prioritize needs and understand cost—including key terms to know and conversation starters for families. It also dives deeper into the admissions process, what’s most important in applying to college, and ways to determine the true value of a degree.


In Demand Job Skills for New College Grads

The Burning Glass Institute, which studies job ads in real time, has identified these foundational skills that are in high demand both for digitally intensive jobs and the wider economy. These skills go beyond the popular conversation around so-called soft skills and 21st century skills to encompass a broader range of business, data, and technical skills that are key to unlocking millions of jobs across domains. While each skill is valuable on its own, students who develop multiple competencies across skill groups earn significantly more and experience increased job mobility and advancement.

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Making the Bachelor’s Degree More Valuable

Employers, including state governments, are dropping degree requirements for their jobs. Combined with the high cost of college, this has increased skepticism about the value of a bachelor’s degree. Using real labor market data, The Burning Glass Institute has researched where the wage premium of a B.A. still exists. Jeff Selingo and Matt Sigelman interpret the data in this new paper to show where the degree still works, where it doesn’t, and how colleges and universities can redesign their B.A. programs to increase ROI.

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“One of the most coolheaded examinations of the admissions process that I’ve read.”

The Newest Book: Who Gets In and Why