America’s standing in international ratings for academic performance has plummeted. In 2010, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan stated: “We have to see this as a wake-up call.…The United States came in 23rd or 24th in most subjects. We can quibble, or we can face the brutal truth that we’re being out-educated.” This sad situation puts teachers in the crosshairs, yet surveys reveal students hate to read and devote very little time to homework or study. Extrapolating from their high school experience, many undergraduates expect that they should not have to work very hard or very long on college assignments, and actively resist when asked to do so. Professors find themselves lowering their academic standards to accommodate the influx of underprepared, semi-motivated students who nonetheless expect to pass. Interactive computer programs and instructional websites have been created to address students' academic shortcomings, but these can only help if students actually make the effort to use them. While colleges compete to attract and retain students (and their tuition), this "consumer culture" mentality, shared by students, undermines the real-world value of a college degree.