Too Neil:

You are right about the need to consider  outcome assessments, but that's
built into programs like the U. of Phoenix offers in that it can credential
its graduates across the country.  Their ability to cut costs comes from no
tenured faculty, no campuses, no frills or other services which adults
students usually don't wan anywayt -plus most of their students are funded
by employers who will be quick to point out slippery standards and
unprepared graduates.

In fact, those who look ahead see a rise in the emphasis on assessment as a
graduation criteria -
Almost like a return to the middle ages when universities merely  tested
and certified students -  students paid for  each lecture they attended and
hired tutors separatelyo to  help them pass the exams. If you weren't a
good lecturer and didn't know your discipline, you wouldn't attract
students nor be paid.

Not a bad idea???

These students are willin g to pay for a college education that gives them
what they want-  relevant courses tied directly into their jobs.
Also proprietary school like those who prepare people for the cosmetic
boards, police exams, etc. are also included in this group as are community
colleges that respond to the community's changing needs -  in fact, with
their adjunct faculty, they can respond better to
changing market  demands than can schools  with tenured faculty.

Martha M.