In addition to changing the terms of the college-affordability debate, Governor Perry’s bully pulpit challenge produced this year the first $10,000 bachelor’s degree—now called the “Texas Affordable Baccalaureate Program”—that incorporates the means specified by the governor toward the end of affordable degrees: online courses and competency-based criteria. In so doing, the Affordable Baccalaureate Program, launched through a partnership among Texas A&M-Commerce, South Texas College, and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, answers the critics’ demands that the cost to colleges of providing the degree be lowered in real terms, and not merely “shifted. CONTINUE READING HERE