This week, ACT announced they would not be introducing section retesting this year, there were calls for highly selective colleges to admit more students, BU released guidelines for students on leave due to mental health issues, and tour guides at the University of Texas went on strike.
The ACT quietly announced that it will not rollout section retesting in 2021-2022. There was no word on whether the plan was on hold or whether it was abandoned completely. ACT said, “We plan to use insights from our efforts to offer this [section retesting] feature as we enhance and innovate new product offerings.” A cryptic announcement at best with no press release (yet).
There’s been some chatter this week about the need for highly selective colleges and universities to admit more students. The suggestion is coming from all corners of higher education and includes a proposal to open satellite campuses in other parts of the country. Proponents of the strategy argue that it’s “democratic and right” for these colleges to broaden their reach and that they won’t have to give up their prestige in doing so.
While the most selective colleges and universities saw surges in applications this year, many schools saw the reverse. The national picture shows that enrollment dropped significantly this spring, particularly at community colleges.
Boston University mental health experts have released a set of guidelines to help college students who have taken leaves of absence for mental health reasons. The guidelines include best practices for the semester away from campus as well as tips and tools for reentering campus life. The guidelines were in the works before the pandemic, but with the rise in reports of anxiety, depression, and suicide ideation over the last academic year, the information comes at a crucial time.
Speaking of returning to campus… As campuses reopen to students there are concerns that students, eager for “the college experience,” will engage in behavior that leads to more hazing deaths. There’s a call to end treating hazing as tradition, but many alumni are pushing back.
And while we’re talking about places steeped in tradition… Tour guides at UT-Austin were on strike this week in protest of a plaque hanging in the Admissions Welcome Center featuring the lyrics from the school’s alma mater, “The Eyes of Texas.” The university recently decided to keep the song as its alma mater and a university committee ruled the lyrics had no racist intent. The marching band will continue to play the song after every home football game, despite protests from students and athletes.