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The Value of Higher Education and Its Challenges in the Modern World


A college degree is essential in today’s culture because of its opportunities for professional development and economic advancement (Kim & Tamborini, 2019). However, as the price of higher education continues to climb and the educational landscape changes, essential issues about college’s worthiness have emerged. This essay dives into the worth of higher education and the issues it confronts while also addressing the future of colleges in the context of technological improvements. It explores the financial benefits of higher education, the costs connected with it, the effects of long-distance study, and the potential of technology to revolutionize the educational landscape by drawing on first-hand accounts, sociological insights, and academic Research.

How much money have your parents paid for your college education?

Throughout my educational journey in Dubai, UAE, I have gained valuable insights into the financial aspects of pursuing higher education. My parents have committed a substantial amount, equivalent to approximately 36,730 AED per year, to support my university education. This financial commitment reflects their commitment to providing me with the best educational opportunities. In Dubai, where the pursuit of higher education is encouraged, there is also the need to ensure that access to education is equitable. Addressing disparities in access and opportunities in higher education aligns with the core principles of Conflict Theory, striving to mitigate inequalities and create a more balanced educational landscape in the region.

Do you think education is worth the money?

Yes, education is undeniably worth the investment in the context of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and this assertion can be comprehensively understood through the lens of sociological theories and perspectives. Scholarly Research, such as the findings by Kim & Tamborini (2019), supports the notion that higher education yields substantial economic returns. In the UAE, this translates into a valuable investment in an individual’s future. Bachelor’s degree holders in Dubai, for instance, earn significantly more than their high school diploma-only peers, and while the UAE has distinct economic conditions, these findings are indicative of a broader sociological perspective. In addition, Research by Georgetown University’s Centre on Education and the Workforce (Carnevale et al., 2023) shows that college grads not only earn more money but also have better job prospects, health insurance, and retirement savings. These results highlight a robust positive association between higher education and more excellent economic prospects, making it an appealing route for individuals seeking a more prosperous future.

The Impact of long- distance learning Based on scholarly Research

Furthermore, the increasing use of online learning, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, has called into question the benefits of higher education. Due to the possibility that students from underprivileged backgrounds will not have as much access to the Internet and other required equipment, online learning has worsened educational disparities (Cruz, 2021). The digital gap has the potential to exacerbate already-existing socioeconomic hierarchies and lead to differences in educational access. Furthermore, academic Research highlights the drawbacks of online learning, as demonstrated by a study from the National Bureau of Economic Research (Singh & Alshammari, 2023). Reduced learning outcomes, lower retention rates, and decreased engagement are possible effects, particularly in areas that call for collaborative learning or hands-on experience. These results highlight the inherent challenges of remote learning, especially for learners who do best in traditional classroom environments.

What might our universities look like in the future due to technological advancement?

Future developments in technology are expected to change the higher education scene completely. By spanning the gap between distant and hands-on learning, virtual reality and virtual reality technologies, for example, have the potential to revolutionize educational experiences by promoting more immersive learning environments (Akour & Alenezi, 2022). Although these innovations raise questions regarding fair access, they can accommodate students needing access to physical assets (Akour & Alenezi, 2022).

Universities are poised to adapt to the changing landscape of education, offering a blend of traditional and online courses to provide students with enhanced flexibility and accessibility. This approach aligns with Structural Functionalism, which underscores the importance of the education system catering to diverse student needs and preferences. Structural Functionalism posits that institutions, including education, must fulfill various functions to ensure societal stability (El et al., 2022). Additionally, this transition reflects the principles of Social Exchange Theory, which focuses on the cost-benefit analysis in social interactions. In education, universities are responding to the students’ demands for more flexible learning options. This adaptation is a form of social exchange where institutions offer online courses to benefit students, enhancing their educational experience.


In conclusion, there is strong evidence demonstrating the monetary benefits of higher education, making it a crucial pathway to improvement and success. However, its worth is subjective, and the burden it places on students and their families’ budgets must be considered. The COVID-19 epidemic has heightened the urgency of addressing inequalities in access and the difficulties of long-distance learning. The future of higher education is likely to be molded by novel techniques as technology continues to develop, but this demands measures to guarantee equal access. A true social equalizer, higher education is also a reminder that incorporating technology must be carefully handled to prevent worsening existing disparities.


Akour, M., & Alenezi, M. (2022). Higher education future in the era of digital transformation. Education Sciences12(11), 784.

Carnevale, A. P., Mabel, Z., Campbell, K. P., & Booth, H. (2023). What Works: Ten Education, Training, and Work-Based Pathway Changes That Lead to Good Jobs. Findings by Race, Gender, and Class from the Georgetown University Pathways-to-Career Policy Simulation Model. Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce.

Cruz, C. (2021). From digital disparity to educational excellence: closing the opportunity and achievement gaps for low-income, Black and Latinx students. Harv. Latinx L. Rev.pp. 24, 33.

Kim, C., & Tamborini, C. R. (2019). Are they still worth it? The long-run earnings benefits of an associate degree, vocational diploma or certificate, and some college. RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences5(3), 64–85.

Singh, A., & Alshammari, M. (2023). Advancing, empowering, and reshaping Saudi society through integrating e-learning technology into higher education.


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