In what single location can you find an article answering the question: "Why Do More Women than Men Want to Earn a Four-Year Degree?", an article about the impact of Hispanic-identified students and their socio-economic status, and a book review of The Black Mystique? The answer: The Journal of Higher Education (JHE).

As the leading scholarly journal on the institution of higher education, the JHE has celebrated nearly 90 years of publications authored by some of America’s leading education researchers, philosophers and teachers. Through a blind peer review process, JHE publishes articles that encourage the creation of effective policy solutions and enhancement of professional development within higher education. 

Why is this news of import to our community of scholars? UVM is now its home. While JHE will remain under the ownership of The Ohio State University Press, and will be published by Taylor & Francis, UVM’s new dean of the College of Education & Social Services (CESS), Dr. Scott Thomas, has brought the JHE editorial office along with him as he takes the helm of UVM's nationally recognized college. Dean Thomas has been JHE’s editor-in-chief for the last five years. The Journal is staffed by Christina Ryan-Rodriguez, editorial assistant and Ph.D. candidate in Higher Education Leadership program at Claremont Graduate University, and Sydnee Viray, editorial assistant and doctoral student in UVM’s Educational Leadership and Policy Studies program.

“The Journal of Higher Education has always taken the long view on the role of colleges and universities in contemporary society," explained Dean Thomas. "I think that it’s quite fitting that the Journal finds its new home at the University of Vermont, a venerable public institution directly shaped by many of the most significant actors in American higher education over the last two centuries."

JHE articles combine disciplinary methods with critical insight to investigate issues important to faculty, administrators, and students. From the very beginning, Forest and Kinser note in their book Higher Education in the United States: An Encyclopedia: “the appearance of the JHE indicated the existence of a critical mass of a professional reading constituency.” The publication encompasses a diverse array of disciplines, reflecting the intent of its creators to explore not only education, but also a wide range of subject matters and their various relationships to the field of education.

“It’s a reservoir of history and research at the center of higher education! If you want to know the latest in higher education educational research or trends over the last century, JHE really ought to be one of your primary sources," said Viray.

For example, the September/October issue of JHE contains these "timeless truths" from research findings:

  • Undergraduates enter college firmly committed to academic honesty, but tend to become more willing to cut corners as the years pass;
  • Student evaluations of faculty members may help individual professors, but have little statistical validity or connection to student learning or development;
  • Commercialism in college athletics has increased rapidly over the past 20 years, bringing with it a raft of management and regulatory challenges.

Other items from the past include a 1934 article by Paul R. Neureiter, who warned at that time that the unresponsiveness and overspecialization of German higher education, which opened its doors to more students and trained them for professions, even though no jobs awaited them at the end, and may have led young Germans to Nazism. Elsewhere, Robert Maynard Hutchins, then president of the University of Chicago, lays out his institution's pioneering general education plan.

The range of topics covered by the Journal represents many contemporary issues that define higher education today. These include changes in the finance, organization, and governance of postsecondary education in the United States and abroad. Readers can expect to see greater attention to international issues in the years ahead, as well as an expansion of coverage on affordability, access, and student success.


Sydnee Viray