Defining Value

What Is College Worth?

What is a degree or certificate worth, especially as the cost continues to grow? Is college still a sure path to a better career and life? These are the questions that many students and families in the United States are wrestling with today. And those of us concerned with improving higher education must examine them, too.

Answering the Call

While there has been a lot of attention focused on expanding access to college and increasing success in college, now there is growing interest with the return on investment of college. New debt and earnings data are prompting much-needed conversations about whether—and how—colleges and universities are providing opportunities for economic mobility for their students.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, in partnership with the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP), has formed a national commission to examine what we are learning about the value of postsecondary education and offer recommendations about how to define and measure that value.

Commission leaders offer their thoughts about why this work matters now more than ever, as colleges and universities strive to provide equitable opportunity in an uncertain time.

Meet the Commission

This diverse group of national leaders and experts from inside and outside higher education is tackling the question of how to define and measure postsecondary value. Learn more about the commission members and some of their perspectives about this critical issue.