‘Tuning’ College Degrees

by E Wayne Ross on April 8, 2009

Inside Higher Ed: ‘Tuning’ College Degrees

In a major new effort to assure rigor and relevance for college degrees at various levels, three states are today formally launching a project aimed at “tuning” academic programs in six fields of study.

“Tuning,” borrowed from Europe’s Bologna Process, involves research and surveys of faculty members, students and employers, and consultation with business and government leaders, to determine exactly what a degree in a given field stands for in terms of students’ learning and competencies. Europe embarked on tuning as part of an effort to make degrees across the continent interchangeable, so that a bachelor’s degree in chemistry in Italy would mean roughly the same as one in the Netherlands, and that graduate programs and employers could thus know what a given degree would represent.