Findings of recent debate on Higher Education hosted by the Guardian, in association with the Higher Education Academy appeared on "The Guardian" Newspaper (UK). These findings focused on whether students are getting all the information they need to make the right choices.
We list some the key findings here as some of them are relevant in selecting courses, degrees, careers and Institutes by Sri Lankan students and parents.
• Students do not always make rational decisions about what and where they will study.
• Peer pressure can be an influential factor in the decisions people make about higher education. In Sri Lanka also students make choices based on the opinions of their friends and family.
• The lack of independent careers advice and guidance makes it more difficult for young people – particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds – to make decisions about their future.
• Used in isolation, the Key Information Set (Information such as student satisfaction, graduate destinations, and accommodation and other costs) has limited value for prospective university applicants. In Sri Lanka many Educational Institutes do not provide these information available, and even students or parents do not bother to consider them.
• The increase in tuition fees has not greatly influenced students' choices about where to study – if anything it has made them more determined to apply to elite universities. In Sri Lanka some parents think that if you spend more on education, that will secure a better employment.
• Today's students who are paying higher tuition fees want a marketable degree that offers a return on investment in their future earnings.[sws_pullquote_right]Peer Evaluation - Students can comment on courses and institutes on studentlanka.com website. [/sws_pullquote_right] • Marketing has a crucial role to play in identifying and promoting the distinctiveness of particular higher education institutions – which is vital in a more competitive marketplace. In Sri Lanka also you can see almost all private higher Educational Institutes put self promotional advertisements on news papers. For Newspapers, Educational Supplements are weekly revenue earning mechanism, hence editorial staff write promotional articles on these courses. There is a lack of ranking and accreditation of private or public higher education courses in Sri Lanka.
Source: The Guardian Website: http://www.guardian.co.uk/higher-education-network/blog/2012/dec/11/student-choice-higher-education?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487