A Phoenix Still in Ashes: For-profit Open Admissions and the Public Good




Perini, Michael

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This thesis describes the implications of open admissions policies widely employed in higher education in the for-profit sector, and in particular by the University of Phoenix, and examines the potential effects of such procedures on the public good. This study seeks to examine these issues by comparing the University of Phoenix’s practices to those employed historically in America through the use of the framework within Cohen and Kisker’s historical analysis The Shaping of American Higher Education. After measuring for-profit practices through the historical spectrums of societal context, institutions, students, staff, faculty, curriculum, governance and finance, this work concludes that the open admissions policies utilized by the for-profits have the high potential to damage notions and actualities of the public good. The for-profit entities may exist and thrive in different niches of higher education than public or private non-profit institutions, though their practices require revision.



Public good, Civic good, For-profit, Higher education, Corporate business, Open admissions