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4 Questions 4 Debra Stewart, Council of Graduate Schools on Graduate Education in the U.S.
The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) is the only national organization in the U.S. that is dedicated solely to the advancement of graduate education and research. Currently, CGS membership includes over 500 universities in the U.S. and Canada, and 16 universities outside North America. Collectively, CGS institutions award more than 95% of all U.S. doctorates and over 78% of all U.S. master's degrees.
Through the work of the Commission on the Future of Graduate Education, CGS and its partners have sought to define the contemporary role of graduate study in the American higher education enterprise. ACAeNews for Counselor Educators asked CGS President Debra Stewart to address the work of the commission and other issues associated with master's and doctoral level study.
1. What is the mission of the Commission on the Future of Graduate Education in the U.S.?
The Commission was a joint initiative of CGS and Educational Testing Service (ETS) to examine the political, demographic, socioeconomic, educational, and financial trends that influence graduate education in the U.S. The assumption underlying this work was that graduate education will play a crucial role in sustaining and advancing the country's global competitiveness and capacity for innovation. The 18-member Commission included university presidents, graduate deans, provosts, industry leaders, and higher education scholars. The Commission guided the development of the report and created a national conversation on how to increase graduate degree attainment by all segments of the country's population.
2. What were the major findings and recommendations contained in The Path Forward: The Future of Graduate Education in the United States, the Commission's original report?
The report identified areas of vulnerability in the U.S. system of graduate education. For example, some studies indicate that the attrition rate in doctoral education is as high as 40% to 50% and the time to degree completion is lengthy. The strong growth in graduate programs outside the U.S. has also shown us that the U.S. must work to remain the number one destination for the world's most talented graduate students.
The report outlined a number of specific recommendations to universities, employers, and policymakers. To further the goal of increasing degree attainment, it proposed that universities review and analyze their own completion and attrition patterns and create interventions to increase completion. Graduate schools were also encouraged to provide appropriate training, mentoring, and information about career opportunities in the business, nonprofit, and government sectors in addition to those inside academia. Universities could support this goal, the report indicated, by building upon their strengths in the area of professional development and by providing transferable skills that allow doctoral recipients to pursue a larger array of employment opportunities.
Employers, for their part, were encouraged to develop and expand an array of business/university partnerships including, for example, internship opportunities for graduate students, portable individual accounts that finance employee education and training, and tuition reimbursement programs. The report also challenged employers to develop business/university partnerships to promote participation of students from under-represented groups in graduate programs.
Finally, the report urged policymakers to authorize and implement two new initiatives to support doctoral and master's education:
The Commission also noted the need for continuing federal government support for existing programs and initiatives. This support would include updating federal training and fellowship programs to keep pace with the increasing cost of graduate education and expanding loan forgiveness programs to other critical fields. The federal government should improve and change the visa process to encourage international students to enroll in U.S. graduate schools and to remain in the U.S. following completion of their degrees.
3. More recently, CGS has focused on the impact The Path Forward has had on graduate education. What have you found that impact to be?
In January, CGS conducted a survey of its college and university membership to learn more about outcomes and impacts from The Path Forward. The results, contained in Steps Taken on the Path Forward, fell into five broad areas. First, deans told us that the report influenced critical decision processes in their institutions. Actions in this category include helping to shape the strategic plan for graduate education within the university and creating structures to implement the university's graduate education aspirations. Second, the report helped universities change or revise priorities; in one case, for example, it resulted in making graduate fellowships a top priority in a current development campaign.
Third, some institutions found that the report simply invited new channels and strategies of communication within the university itself, resulting, in one case, in an open letter from the dean to faculty inviting discussion about graduate education issues. Fourth, many deans told us that the report had shaped the development outcome measures for graduate education and supported initiatives focused on degree completion. Finally, in some cases, the report stimulated the introduction of new programs–both new degree programs and new professional development programs for graduate students. These are just some examples of the kinds of activities that are underway.
4. Where does graduate education fit into the "Winning the Future" agenda set forth by President Obama in his 2011 State of the Union address?
U.S. competitiveness in the global economy hinges on our ability to produce sufficient numbers of graduate degree holders – people with the advanced knowledge and abilities to address current challenges we face as well as those we cannot even imagine today. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that by 2018 more jobs will require people with advanced degrees, projecting an 18% increase in jobs requiring a master's degree and a 17% increase for people with doctoral degrees.
Governments around the world are investing in graduate education as a key component of innovation and competitiveness. Europe already produces more doctorates in science and engineering than are produced in the U.S. China and India are making substantial investments in their graduate education systems. Today, the U.S. must make strategic investments in research and education, especially at the graduate level.
Dr. Debra W. Stewart became President of the Council of Graduate Schools in July 2000. She holds degrees from Marquette University, University of Maryland and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. In 1975 she joined the North Carolina State University faculty and was professor of Political Science and Public Administration from 1984 to 2000. In 1983 she became Associate Dean of the Graduate School at North Carolina State and Dean of the Graduate School in 1988. In 1994 she served as Interim Chancellor at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. Prior to CGS, she was Vice Chancellor and Dean of the Graduate School at North Carolina State University.
Faculty Salaries Fail to Keep Pace with Inflation
The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) report on the salaries of full time faculty, It's Not Over Yet: The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2010-11, discusses the lingering impact of the Great Recession, which supposedly ended in 2009, on college and university budgets and faculty salaries. The survey found the average salary for continuing faculty increased by 1.4%, slightly under the rate of inflation. This marked the second consecutive year that faculty members lost ground economically.
The Chronicle of Higher Education has developed a "salary explorer" using 1,300 institutions chosen by AAUP, which permits users to examine data from the 2010-11 survey by college name, salary range, location, and institution type.
ACES 2011 Conference October 26-30 in Nashville
"Leading the Leaders, Helping the Helpers, Shaping the Future" is the theme of the 2011 ACES Conference to be held October 26-30 at the Gaylord Resort and Convention Center in Nashville, TN. Conference details and registration information can be found at
In the News: College Faculty Burnout on Par with Other Professions
InsideHigherEd reported recently on an international study revealing that higher education faculty burnout and compassion fatigue is catching up to that experienced by other education and health professionals. An analysis of 12 peer-reviewed studies in the U.S., U.K, Canada, South Africa, Spain, Turkey, and the Netherlands found greater burnout among younger academics, a factor researchers attribute to an exposure to larger numbers of students. Another explanation offered was that experienced faculty members may be operating with better coping mechanisms in place. Researchers also reported that women, thought to be balancing multiple life and work roles, suffered higher levels of emotional exhaustion.
Counselor Educators Recognized for Teaching, Research, Service
Counselor educators stood tall at the recent ACA Conference & Exposition as awards were being bestowed for outstanding achievements in teaching, research, and service to the counseling profession. The counselor educators receiving national ACA awards included:
ACA Research Award
ACA Extended Research Award
ACA Best Practice Award
Counselor Educator Advocacy Award
ACA Professional Development Award
Robert H. Rencken Emerging Professional Leader Award
David K. Brooks Jr. Distinguished Mentor Award
2011 ACA Fellows
Don Dinkmeyer Social Interest Award
Kitty Cole Human Rights Award
Gilbert and Kathleen Wrenn Award for a Humanitarian and Caring Person
ACA Presidential Award
ACA Releases New Editions of Popular Textbooks by Leading Authors
Several titles from the ACA best-seller list are now available in new editions, just in time to be considered as textbooks for the fall semester.
Clinical Supervision in the Helping Professions: A Practical Guide, Second Edition
This straightforward guide for new and practicing supervisors emphasizes the attainment of skills necessary to effectively supervise others in a variety of settings. Topics covered include the roles and responsibilities of supervisors, the supervisory relationship, models and methods of supervision, becoming a multiculturally competent supervisor, ethical and legal issues in supervision, managing crisis situations, and evaluation in supervision. User-friendly tips, case examples, sample forms, questions for reflection, and group activities are included throughout the text, as are contributing supervisors' Voices From the Field and the Authors' Personal Perspectives–making this an interactive learning tool that is sure to keep readers interested and involved.
2010 | 304 pgs
The Creative Arts in Counseling, Fourth Edition
In this detailed examination of the expressive therapies, Dr. Gladding demonstrates how music, dance, imagery, visual arts, literature, drama, and humor can be used effectively in counseling. Combining history, theory, and application, he provides a rationale for using each art form with how-to strategies for working with clients of all ages and diverse cultural backgrounds to promote positive change and growth. This fourth edition includes Creative Reflection sections that give readers an opportunity to ponder their own creativity and, for greater ease of use, a new chapter that briefly describes each of the 117 exercises found in the book.
2011 | 308 pgs
Counseling and Psychotherapy: Theories and Interventions, Fifth Edition
This student-friendly and well designed introductory text provides a thorough overview of 14 widely used theories. Experts examine each theory from the perspective of its historical background, major constructs, goals, cross-cultural considerations, and limitations. Traditional and brief interventions integrate theory with specific counseling strategies, giving students further insight into the counseling process and guidance in developing their personal counseling style. A consistent case study across chapters reinforces the differences between theories and illustrates assessment of client concerns and treatment planning. Introductory chapters explore core dimensions and brief approaches to the helping relationship, and how to best deliver counseling and advocacy services to diverse client groups. A complimentary test manual and PowerPoints for instructors' use are available by request on university letterhead.
2011 | 408 pgs
ACA is happy to provide complimentary desk copies for college or university course adoption. Please make requests on university or institutional letterhead and send to:
Carol Adams, ACA Desk Copy Request Processing, 5999 Stevenson Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22304-3300. Email: email@example.com. Telephone: 703-823-9800 x380, 703-370-4833 (fax)
Please provide the following information with your request:
The following shipping fees apply to examination copy requests: U.S. destinations = $8.75 for the first book and $1.00 for each additional book; International destinations = $15.00 for the first book and $2.00 for each additional book. Please provide credit card information at the time of the request to cover shipping and handling fees. For further information on desk copy requests, call ACA at 703-823-9800 x380.
Fast Fact: International Student Applications to Grad School Rise Again
The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) annual report of international student applications, released in April, shows the number of prospective students from outside the U.S. increased by 9% between 2010 and 2011, the sixth consecutive year of gains. Other report highlights included:
Syllabus Clearinghouse Gets 22,000+ Hits
Popular and valuable are the two best adjectives to describe the ACA-ACES Syllabus Clearinghouse. The website has been "hit" 22,534 times since it was created in 2009. With 378 syllabi in the collection, it has become the go to repository for counselor educators developing or revising their course syllabi. The categories that have received the most visits are: Counseling Theories, Group Work, Practicum, and Rehabilitation. The Group Work designation, for example, contains syllabi for 17 difference course titles.
Counselor educators looking for inspiration for summer or fall courses can visit
Quotable Quotes of Notable People: Steve de Shazer on Reading Between the Lines
"The danger of reading between the lines is that there might be nothing there. So you've just got to listen to what the client says."
Steve de Shazer (1940-2005), author, classical musician, developer and pioneer of solution-focused brief counseling.
Worth Reading: Community Colleges as Teaching Venues for Graduate Students, Grads
Continued budget concerns and limited career opportunities paint a dismal picture for doctoral students wishing to teach, but a recent "Manage Your Career" column in the Chronicle of Higher Education offers one way around the current drought—internships and teaching positions at community colleges. Guest columnist Rob Jenkins, himself an associate professor at Georgia Perimeter College and author of Building a Career in America's Community Colleges, proposes that graduate schools and two-year colleges get their heads together and look for possible pathways into the world of teaching in postsecondary education.
Student Liability Insurance for ACA Master's Level Students
ACA student membership now includes liability insurance when the student is enrolled and engaged in a master's degree counseling curriculum at a post-secondary institution. Coverage is available to ACA student members solely while performing counseling services (e.g., practicum and internship) related to such curriculum. Features of the student insurance program include:
Further details are available at the ACA Insurance Trust website:
Summer JCD to Focus on Research and Publishing
The Journal of Counseling & Development's special section on research and publishing, in the forthcoming summer edition, is destined to be "must reading" for counselor educators. Watch your mailboxes in early June for the JCD which will include the following:
Note: The above is a partial list of the articles contained in the JCD Summer Edition.
About ACAeNews for Counselor Educators
ACAeNews for Counselor Educators is one of four electronic newsletters that are published three times per year each by the American Counseling Association for the benefit of members working in elementary, middle, secondary and adult education settings. It is disseminated as an opt-in subscription enewsletter and is a free benefit of ACA membership.
The other three special focus enewsletters are:
Any reference to a product, service or activity or listing of a website in this publication does not imply endorsement by ACA. Any views and opinions are those of the sponsoring organization and may or may not be shared by ACA.
Direct comments, questions, and submissions to Frank Burtnett. All submissions will be subject to review by ACA for accuracy, timeliness and relevance to the readership and may be edited.
Marcheta P. Evans, Ph.D., President
Richard Yep, CAE, Executive Director
Debra Bass, Director of Marketing and Communications
Frank Burtnett, Ed.D., NCC, NCCC, ACAeNews Editor
Don Kenneally, Internet Development / Production
ACA Website: www.counseling.org
Copyright 2011, American Counseling Association, 5999 Stevenson Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22304. Telephone: 703-823-9800. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Permission is hereby granted to reproduce anything contained in this newsletter as long as the American Counseling Association is identified as the original source of the information.
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