An Examination of the Impact of Duncan Era Higher Education Policy as PeRceived by Proprietary School Leadership

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Authors
Sagers, D. Ryan
Issue Date
2020-07-10
Type
Dissertation
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en_US
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Abstract
Proprietary institutions of higher education, more commonly referred to as “for-profit” colleges and universities, have been a polarizing phenomenon in U.S. post-secondary education. Much of the literature is partisan and deeply ideological in nature making it difficult for interested parties to understand the role that these institutions do or should play in American higher education. As federal and state governments have sought to regulate the sector, opponents and proponents for the sector have been vocal in their positions leaving regulators and proprietary education leaders in a difficult position. This phenomenological qualitative study works describes the perception of proprietary education leaders regarding the federal regulatory oversight of the proprietary sector of higher education; voices not present in the vast majority of literature. In particular, this study sought to understand perceptions of leaders who experienced the Duncan Regulatory Era and its legacy impact on the sector. Key to this study is understanding how proprietary education leaders perceive the impact that federal regulation has on lowincome and first-generation minority student populations, generally among the most vulnerable student groups in higher education. Seven primary themes emerged, the most noteworthy is the perception that many of the regulations, including those no longer in effect, have served to limit opportunities for low-income students. Utilizing the study data as well as relevant literature, this work provides insights from sector leaders and a framework for proprietary education leaders as well as policy makers on how to approach future regulatory negotiations and navigate future challenges in proprietary higher education.
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Creighton University
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Copyright is retained by the Author. A non-exclusive distribution right is granted to Creighton University and to ProQuest following the publishing model selected above.
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