Home » News » Ohio public colleges increase 3-year graduation programs

Ohio public colleges increase 3-year graduation programs

The average time to complete a college degree might be shortened for college students in Ohio, but some Ohio State faculty aren’t on board with the plan.
As of Monday, Ohio’s 13 public universities have made 10 percent of their programs achievable for students in three years as part of an initiative approved by Ohio Gov. John Kasich and state legislation, according to a release from the Ohio Board of Regents.  
By 2014, students should have the option to complete 60 percent of the universities’ offered programs in just three years, according to the release.
Jim Petro, the Ohio Board of Regents chancellor, said in the press release that “time can be the enemy of many students,” and that giving students the chance to complete their degree in less time will increase the number of degrees and get students into the workforce faster.
“Giving students the option of earning a bachelor’s degree in three years instead of four or more years will help them save money while encouraging the completion of their college education,” Petro said in the release.
In-state OSU students pay $10,037 in tuition and fees each year, and out-of-state students pay $25,445 in tuition and fees in addition to costs for housing and supplies. While graduating one year earlier would save students money, some OSU faculty think this initiative isn’t doing students any favors academically.
Wayne Carlson, OSU’s vice provost for Undergraduate Studies and Dean of Undergraduate Studies , has questioned whether three years are enough time to receive a quality education and the full college experience.
“If students choose to do that, they are missing out on a significant part of university experience,” Carlson said. “I don’t know if it’s worth it.”
Carlson said he is a firm believer in the traditional four-year degree program.
“The maturation process of students is very noticeable in their fourth year,” Carlson said. “And the amount of classes and the workload (in completing a program in three years) can stop students from entering clubs and participating in other activities.”
Although this three-year option is not advertised to potential and current students, it has been available for the past year-and-a-half, Carlson said.
“Very few students take advantage of the credits they bring in from AP (Advanced Placement) and PSEOP (Post Secondary Enrollment Options Program) courses,” Carslon said. “And students who do usually pick up another major, a minor or study abroad. They really want to be here for four years.”
AP and PSEOP courses are designed for high school students to receive college credit for classes before attending college.
Carlson said he believes the motivation for students to graduate sooner is that it would save them money.
“Unless (they) have a burning desire to enter the work force,” Carlson joked.
Some students agreed with Carlson and said they wouldn’t be interested in completing their degrees in three years.
Matthew Hankinson, a fourth-year in sustainable plant systems, said he would not have tried to graduate in three years.
“It would save me money, but I do like being here,” Hankinson said. “It took some time to get the hang of the workload and studying and finally get what’s going on. I do think four years is better.”
Autumn Blatt, a third-year in psychology and journalism, also does not like the concept.
“We’re already so crunched for time, trying to cram it into three would be outrageous,” Blatt said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.