Republicans skeptical of colleges’ impact on U.S., but most see benefits for workforce preparation

Pew Research did a survey to see how people view college education and how it impacts society. We will summarize the findings without editorial.

Currently, 58% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say colleges and universities have a negative effect on the way things are going in the country, while just 36% say their effect is positive.

72% of Democrats including large majorities of college graduates and non-college graduates, continue to view colleges and universities as having a positive effect on the nation.

62% of Republicans and Republican leaners felt college enable people to be better prepared for jobs and earn more money.

Comparable majorities of Republicans (89%) and Democrats (87%) who graduated from a four-year college said their education was useful in developing skills for the workplace, including about half in each group who said their education was very useful (53% and 52%, respectively).

Overwhelming majorities of Republican (93%) and Democratic (97%) college graduates also indicated their education was useful in helping them grow personally and intellectually. However, Democrats were more likely than Republicans to say it was very useful in personal growth (75% vs. 64%, respectively).

In a two-way question, 58% of Republicans said the main purpose of college should be to teach specific skills and knowledge for the workplace; 28% said it should be personal growth. Democrats were divided: 43% said the main purpose of college should be to learn specific skills while 42% said personal growth.

Read and view the full report from Pew Research here:

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