Get a Degree or Teach Yourself?

Author: Allison Minutillo

The value of a degree continues to be questioned.

To get a degree or not to get a degree? That is (and continues to be) the question.

Believe it or not, Google wasn’t always a thing. It was founded on a date, just like every other business on the planet. That date was Sept. 4, 1998. Why is this pertinent to higher education institutions?

It means your prospective student audiences — post-traditional adult learners and traditional high schoolers — have experienced the habit of “just Googling it” for over 20 years. Over 20! That’s the entire lifespan of your traditional student population, also known as generation Z.

Ponder the big question they’re asking themselves:Why spend thousands of dollars and put myself in debt when I can just Google my way through finding the answers needed to propel my career? Or watch YouTube videos to teach myself a new skill?

The question around the value of a higher-level degree makes much more sense in this context, which is why — regardless of whether or not you believe this theory— higher ed institutions need to wake up, shake it up, and start reinventing themselves (especially their enrollment marketing strategies). “Is it worth it?” is more real than ever before and will continue to be until the next paradigm shift.