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The author of the New York Times and international bestseller How Children Succeed reveals the growing social crisis in universities

Universities are, theoretically, for anyone who possesses the necessary talent and drive. But in recent years, parental wealth has become an ever-greater factor in determining who will go where and how successful their subsequent life will be. Today, the top universities, which have a huge positive impact on the future earnings of their graduates, are largely populated by the children of affluent families. They are virtually closed to children from low-income homes. And the universities that less affluent students end up going to invariably offer lower-quality (though often not lower-cost) education. In other words, a further education system that in the decades after the Second World War was intended to spread its benefits to all is now reinforcing the gulf between the haves and the have-nots. In Who Needs College? Paul Tough takes the lid off the American university system, explains why it is failing so many people so badly, and suggests what can be done about it. His conclusions offer stark lessons for the education of young people around the world.

Formats & editions

  • EBook


    September 19, 2019

    Cornerstone Digital

    400 pages

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