For-profit higher education in the United States (known as for-profit college or proprietary education in some instances) refers to higher education educational institutions operated by private, profit-seeking businesses. Historically, most colleges and universities in the US have been non-profit, but for-profit institutions rapidly grew in number and size from 1972 to 2009. Although supporters of for-profit higher education have argued that the profit motive encourages efficiency, the for-profit educational industry has received severe negative criticism because of its sales techniques, high costs, and poor student outcomes. In some cases operators of for-profit colleges have faced criminal charges or other legal sanctions.

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  • For-profit higher education in the United States (known as for-profit college or proprietary education in some instances) refers to higher education educational institutions operated by private, profit-seeking businesses. Historically, most colleges and universities in the US have been non-profit, but for-profit institutions rapidly grew in number and size from 1972 to 2009. Although supporters of for-profit higher education have argued that the profit motive encourages efficiency, the for-profit educational industry has received severe negative criticism because of its sales techniques, high costs, and poor student outcomes. In some cases operators of for-profit colleges have faced criminal charges or other legal sanctions. Since 2010, for-profit colleges have received greater scrutiny and negative attention from the US government, state Attorneys General, the media, and scholars. In 2016, research by Treasury Department economist Nicholas Turner and George Washington University economist Stephanie Riegg Cellini found that students who attended for-profit colleges would have been better off not going to school, or attending a community college. The National Bureau of Economic Research paper was based on an analysis of 567,000 students who attended for-profit colleges from 2006 to 2008. More than 80% carried student loan debt. The Department of Veterans Affairs has also reported that veterans using the GI Bill for education submitted more complaints about for-profit colleges, particularly University of Phoenix, ITT Technical Institute, Devry University, and Colorado Technical University, than their public or private non-profit counterparts. The advocacy group the Debt Collective has created its own, unofficial "Defense to Repayment App" that allows former students of schools accused of fraud to pursue debt cancellation. The applications generated through the Debt Collective's online form was cited by the Department of Education in a Federal Register notice, which said that "a need for a clearer process for potential claimants" arose due to the submission of over 1000 defense to repayment claims by "a building debt activism movement." (en)
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  • 45041853 (xsd:integer)
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  • 744970061 (xsd:integer)
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  • October 2015
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  • So what? Explain--in neutral and informative language.
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  • For-profit higher education in the United States (known as for-profit college or proprietary education in some instances) refers to higher education educational institutions operated by private, profit-seeking businesses. Historically, most colleges and universities in the US have been non-profit, but for-profit institutions rapidly grew in number and size from 1972 to 2009. Although supporters of for-profit higher education have argued that the profit motive encourages efficiency, the for-profit educational industry has received severe negative criticism because of its sales techniques, high costs, and poor student outcomes. In some cases operators of for-profit colleges have faced criminal charges or other legal sanctions. (en)
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  • For-profit higher education in the United States (en)
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