Teach Impediment

When the student can't understand the instructor, who is to blame?

On the phone from Fargo, N.D., State Rep. Bette Grande's voice rings with clarity. "Colleges are a business," she says in a starched Midwestern accent. "When we put research as our No. 1 focus, we forgot the student," she says. "We got ourselves all turned around."

Ms. Grande could be talking about any of the ills plaguing a modern university -- drops in per-student spending, tuition increases, or maybe