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Access and the Rise of Accountability in the Governance of Public Universities in the US

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses the rise of accountability in the governance of public higher education on three states which have been chosen for their economic, demographic and educational differences: California, Illinois and West Virginia. It shows how these states have approached the question of accountability and performance assessment, and demonstrates that in spite of their differences, the three states have made similar choices at similar times. Finally, the chapter examines some of the consequences the accountability systems set up by the states may have in terms of access for the population of these states. The National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education (NCPPHE) published biennial reports entitled Measuring Up, providing a national assessment of performance, as well as reports for each state. In the reports, letter grades were given to states on five criteria: college preparation, college participation, affordability, degree completion and benefits for the state.

Keywords: accountability; California; Illinois; NCPPHE; public higher education; West Virginia



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