|By Alan Hall | Excerpted from the March 2012 Socionomist
Originally published under the title, “The Education Industry is Traversing a Broad, Multi-Decade Social Mood Peak”
In this timely update of his February 2011 study, Alan Hall reports on the status of seven developments in higher education that reveal an advancing monumental transformation in the industry: The reversal of a century-long, upward trend in the popularity and cost of higher education. Five developments are on track with his previous forecasts, one is evolving, and the emergence of the last one surprised even him. The following excerpt details a few of these developments.
1. The “Creative Destruction” of the Industry Has Begun
What We Said
Traditional educational institutions may eventually lose control of the manufacture and distribution of education much as the music and publishing industries lost their grip on music and text. Bear markets topple dominant players and open the field to nimbler entrepreneurs, who will develop alternatives to institutional education.1
What Has Happened Since
… Today’s technological breakthrough is the Internet, of course, which the July 1998 Theorist called “a massive engine for falling prices in countless businesses and professions.” Education is no exception. On March 4, 2012, The New York Times took note of the trend:
Welcome to the brave new world of Massive Open Online Courses — known as MOOCs — a tool for democratizing higher education. … in the past few months hundreds of thousands of motivated students around the world who lack access to elite universities have been embracing them … without paying tuition or collecting a college degree. And in what some see as a threat to traditional institutions, several of these courses now come with an informal credential….3
… 2. Education’s Image is Shifting
What We Said
“Society’s feelings about education shift in concert with social mood,” we wrote. We presented evidence that the public becomes critical of colleges and universities during negative trends in the social mood.
What Has Happened Since
Six months later, USA Today reported the results of a new study by the educators’ association Phi Delta Kappa International:
Since 2001, Americans have soured on schools in general: When 1,002 adults were asked June 4-13 to give a letter grade to “public schools in the nation as a whole,” only 17 percent gave them an A or B, down from 23 percent in 2001 and 27 percent in 1985.7 …
In the remainder of this six-page article, author Alan Hall examines five more trends in the education industry – surrounding academic performance, student debt, academic scandal, tuition prices, and “The College Sugar Daddy” – that point to the forthcoming collapse of the higher education business.
Want more content like this?
The Socionomist is the only monthly publication that offers you practical insights on the relationship between social mood, financial markets and cultural trends. Each issue warns you about big societal changes before they can harm you and reveals breakthrough opportunities emerging from trends in society.
(Socionomics Members: Log in for the full article and your complete, exclusive archive.)
Socionomist is a monthly online magazine designed to help
readers see and capitalize on the waves of social mood that contantly occur
throughout the world. It is published by the Socionomics
Institute, Robert R. Prechter, president; Matt Lampert, editor-in-chief;
Alyssa Hayden, editor; Alan Hall and Chuck Thompson, staff writers; Dave Allman
and Pete Kendall, editorial direction; Chuck Thompson, production; Ben Hall,
For subscription matters, contact Customer Care: Call 770-536-0309 (internationally) or 800-336-1618 (within the U.S.). Or email email@example.com.
We are always interested in guest submissions. Please email manuscripts and proposals to Chuck Thompson via firstname.lastname@example.org. Mailing address: P.O. Box 1618, Gainesville, Georgia, 30503, U.S.A. Phone 770-536-0309. Please consult the submission guidelines located at https://secureservercdn.net/18.104.22.168/3d8.988.myftpupload.com/PDF/Socionomist_Submission_Guidelines.pdf.
For our latest offerings: Visit our website, www.socionomics.net, listing BOOKS, DVDs and more.
Correspondence is welcome, but volume of mail often precludes a reply. Whether it is a general inquiry, socionomics commentary or a research idea, you can email us at email@example.com.
Most economists, historians and sociologists
presume that events determine society’s mood. But socionomics hypothesizes
the opposite: that social mood regulates the character of social events. The
events of history—such as investment booms and busts, political events,
macroeconomic trends and even peace and war—are the products of a naturally
occurring pattern of social-mood fluctuation. Such events, therefore, are not
randomly distributed, as is commonly believed, but are in fact probabilistically
predictable. Socionomics also posits that the stock market is the best available
meter of a society’s aggregate mood, that news is irrelevant to social
mood, and that financial and economic decision-making are fundamentally different
in that financial decisions are motivated by the herding impulse while economic
choices are guided by supply and demand. For more information about socionomic
theory, see (1) the text, The
Wave Principle of Human Social Behavior © 1999, by Robert Prechter;
(2) the introductory documentary History's
Hidden Engine; (3) the video Toward
a New Science of Social Prediction, Prechter’s 2004 speech before
the London School of Economics in which he presents evidence to support his
socionomic hypothesis; and (4) the Socionomics Institute’s website, www.socionomics.net.
At no time will the Socionomics Institute make specific recommendations about
a course of action for any specific person, and at no time may a reader, caller
or viewer be justified in inferring that any such advice is intended.
All contents copyright © 2021 Socionomics Institute. All rights reserved. Feel free to quote, cite or review, giving full credit. Typos and other such errors may be corrected after initial posting.