Community Colleges and Global Counterparts: Institutional Changes to Support Massification of Higher Education

Community Colleges and Global Counterparts: Institutional Changes to Support Massification of Higher Education

Rosalind Latiner Raby (California State University, USA)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-5861-3.ch002
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Higher education massification has broadened access to universities throughout the world. However, admission remains highly competitive. Alternative institutions emerged in each country to provide opportunities that would otherwise not exist. These institutions share specific commonalities and are seen as a unique higher educational sector. The Community College and global counterpart sector exists alongside the university sector and shares similarities in mission, philosophy, and institutional design.
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Sector Distinctions

Community Colleges and Global Counterparts share four specific characteristics (Raby & Valeau, 2009). These institutions have a mission in which professional and academic programs are responsive to the educational needs of local communities and industries and whose curricular programs are likewise defined by local needs. In that these institutions are purposefully located in communities where students live, there is an ease of access that increases enrollment for non-traditional students. Secondly, this sector offers options for university overflow and a “second chance” for non-traditional students who have long been excluded from higher education. Thirdly, this sector offers short-term and sometimes longer multi-purpose curricula to meet regional medium-term labor requirements in high demand occupations in changing economies. Finally, these institutions support a mission that views educational access as necessary for providing economic and social capital that is needed to ensure social prosperity.

Institutions in this sector are mostly divided according to institutional type (Applied Sectors of Higher Education College of Further Education; Community College; Higher Colleges of Technology; Junior College; Polytechnic; Technical University; Technical and Further Education College; and University Colleges), academic level (upper-secondary, post-secondary; sub-degree; pre-baccalaureate); length of study (short cycle; short-term; two-year; three-year); type of study (post-compulsory; tertiary); curricular context (lifelong education, transfer education, vocational education), regional distinctions (American or European models), and status (non-university, second-tier). Even within the same institution, multiple emphasis can be offered, such as pre-baccalaureate and baccalaureate degrees, and/or vocational and further education curriculum. The multi-purpose is a result of these institutions responding to changing local and national needs by redefining purpose, institutional structure, and even names of these institutions. In a review of 1,500 publications, evidence shows that institutions in this sector are referred to by many different names. Table 1 lists the most common terms given to these institutions and the counties that were in focus in the publications (Raby &Valeau, 2018).

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