UniversityNow and the Mythologies of Higher Ed | Educational Technology in Higher Education |

Monday was Graduation Day at the University of Oregon. As my boyfriend and I wandered nearby campus and saw all the twenty-somethings in caps and gowns and party gear, he turned to me and asked, “Where are all the older students?” “Not at the UofO,” I replied.

Indeed, although enrollment in college has increased for those over age 25, enrollment among that demographic is actually on the decline at many public institutions. Instead, many of these adults are opting to attend for-profits, and adult learners make up the majority of for-profits’ student population: 65% of those enrolled at for-profits are 25 or older, while just 31% of students at four-year public colleges are. There are a lot of reasons for this: helped by the fact that many for-profits offer online and asynchronous classes, something well-suited to adult learners’ work schedules.