Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Faculty Members at One More University Push Back at Online Programs - Beckie Supiano, Chronicle of Higher Ed

Faculty unions at Eastern Michigan U. distributed fliers objecting to the university's deal with a provider of online courses. Professors at Eastern Michigan University are objecting to its partnership with a private company to market and support online programs, making it the latest institution to grapple with questions about the quality of online instruction. The unions representing Eastern Michigan’s faculty members and lecturers are asking campus leaders to stop marketing online programs with the company, Academic Partnerships, until they can review the arrangement. And they’re rolling out an advertising campaign in an effort to build public support for their position. http://www.chronicle.com/article/faculty-members-at-one-more/241788

The bubble is going to burst for colleges and universities, professor says - JARRETT LYONS, Salon.com

Half of the colleges and universities in the United States are in danger of bankruptcy over the coming decades. Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen said that the number — up to 2,000 schools could be affected over the next 10 to 15 years — is thanks to online education. In Christensen’s most recent book, “The Innovative University,” he and co-author Henry Eyring theorized that online education will dominate the marketplace for higher education and drive more traditional schools into bankruptcy. At the a recent Salceforce.org Higher Education Summit, he said "If you're asking whether the providers get disrupted within a decade — I might bet that it takes nine years rather than 10," according to CNBC. https://www.salon.com/2017/11/15/the-bubble-is-going-to-burst-for-colleges-and-universities-professor-says/

Gordon Gee: For higher ed to survive, we've got to 'blow up the box' - Autumn A. Arnett, Education dive

West Virginia University President Gordon Gee says when he “first started as a university president nearly 40 years ago, you’d send your kid off to school, maybe they’d join a fraternity or sorority, then they’d come back home and get a real job.” “Now, our universities and colleges and higher ed in general is the economic driver” of the country, he said, addressing a crowd gathered in Washington, D.C. Wednesday for the Committee on Economic Development’s policy conference. Gee said the purpose of higher ed shouldn’t be an either-or proposition; it should prepare students to get good jobs and it should provide an environment in which they can find themselves socially. Matthew Sigelman, CEO of Burning Glass Technologies, added that higher ed needs to “be able to map the language of academia to the language of the job market.” https://www.educationdive.com/news/gordon-gee-for-higher-ed-to-survive-weve-got-to-blow-up-the-box/511068/

Monday, November 20, 2017

3 ways forward-thinking colleges usher in a new generation of students - Robert Hansen (UPCEA CEO), Hechinger Report

During the days when nearly every college graduate could expect a good job at the end of their educational journey, colleges differentiated themselves through selectivity, prestige, and rankings. Yet, the same approach today offers diminishing returns; powerful demographic and cultural shifts may explain why. Colleges and universities are starting to retool their approach to today’s economic realities — just as their own students are doing through lifelong learning. Decades of established practice are catching up with the needs of today’s increasingly diverse and career-driven learners. Is your institution up for it?  http://hechingerreport.org/opinion-3-ways-forward-thinking-colleges-usher-new-generation-students/

Report: Most Colleges and Universities Have Changed Org Structure to Support Student Success - Joshua Bolkan, Campus Technology

Nearly three-quarters, 73 percent, of higher education institutions have changed their organizational structure to support student success initiatives in the last two years, according to a new report from ed tech provider Unit4. The report is based on a survey of 150 IT decision makers in higher education, most of whom were CIOs, CTOs and VPs or directors of IT or technology, according to information released by the company. Retention initiatives were the most commonly cited student support measures that lead to organizational change, according to respondents, with course completion rates and time-to-graduation following, student experiences and services coming in next and job placement and employability coming in fourth. https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/11/03/report-most-colleges-and-universities-have-changed-org-structure-to-support-student-success.aspx

China Exerts More Control Over Foreign Universities - Elizabeth Redden, Inside Higher Ed

The Chinese Communist Party is seeking to exert more control over foreign universities, raising concerns that guarantees of academic freedom will not be honored, the Financial Times reported. A directive from the Education Ministry affects joint ventures operated by Chinese and foreign universities, including full-fledged campuses such as New York University’s campus in Shanghai, a joint venture with East China Normal University, or Duke University's campus in Kunshan, a joint venture with Wuhan University. The directive reportedly orders party secretaries at joint ventures to be given vice chancellor status and a seat on the boards of trustees. https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2017/11/20/china-exerts-more-control-over-foreign-universities

Sunday, November 19, 2017

What to Expect in an Online Degree Program Residency - Bradley Fuster, US News

Some programs require students to visit campus for face-to-face networking opportunities, discussions and activities.  Many include an in-person requirement, or residency, where students meet either on the school's main campus or at a regional satellite campus. Residencies are more common in online graduate degree programs, such as MBAs, as well as clinical fields, like counseling, nursing and dietetics, though they do exist in certain certificate and online undergraduate degree programs. Residency lengths vary among online programs, from none at all to one day a week, 10 days a year, two weekends a month or a longer immersion. Residencies aim to supplement reading- and writing-intensive coursework. Students considering an online degree program should determine whether an on-ground residency is right for them and their career goals and if the time, travel and financial demands of a residency are within reach. Here are four aspects to expect during an online program residency experience. https://www.usnews.com/education/online-learning-lessons/articles/2017-11-10/what-to-expect-in-an-online-degree-program-residency

How Much Hollywood Glitz Should Colleges Use in Their Online Courses? - Jeffrey R. Young, EdSurge

The move is part of a trend—led by for-profit providers but done by some traditional colleges as well—to glitz up course materials, in some cases bringing in celebrity guests. This new approach juxtaposes video models created by most professors today, adding a production crew, producers, lights and angles to video instruction.  Some nonprofit colleges that produce MOOCs, or Massive Open Online Courses, have experimented with different production methods. Researchers at MIT, for instance, did an analysis of various online courses in 2013, and one finding suggested “videos that intersperse an instructor’s talking head with PowerPoint slides are more engaging than showing only slides.” In other words, it might help to show someone’s face during online videos, whether they’re a celebrity or not. Some of the most popular teaching videos online are the most low-fi. A few videos on Khan Academy, for instance, have attracted millions of views, even though they are essentially voiceovers of Sal Khan explaining concepts while he draws on a screen or annotates images. https://www.edsurge.com/news/2017-11-08-how-much-hollywood-glitz-should-colleges-use-in-their-online-courses

(Mostly) Free Online Courses to Increase Your Digital Skills - Brittany Loeffler, Uloop

You don’t need a classroom anymore to learn essential skills to jumpstart your career. Millennials are taking online courses to learn important skills in our now-digital world. They are studying skills that are not taught in classrooms, right from the comfort of their own home, for free. Millennials are known for rejecting the standard 9-5 job in an office and taking on more freelance work. Taking online courses to learn and increase digital skills gives recent college graduates the ability to work from home with multiple clients and make a living on their own terms. Interested in learning more about how you can make money right from your computer? Take a look at the list of online courses and platforms linked below to get started. https://www.uloop.com/news/view.php/252563/Mostly-Free-Online-Courses-to-Increase-Your-Digital-Skills

Saturday, November 18, 2017

30% Harder to Design for the Online Learning Environment - Nanette Miner, ATD

In fact, it is 30 percent harder to design training for the online environment because there is one more entity that needs to be designed for—the technology. By using classroom training design as the benchmark, we know that learning is typically designed for two entities: the facilitator and the participant. The facilitator’s role is to lead the class and make logical connections between the segments of content. The participant’s role is to practice with the content and interact with one other learners during any activities that are designed to bring the content to life. In the online environment, though, the facilitator’s and participant’s roles are a bit different. What’s more, there is the third role of the technology itself, and perhaps someone who is managing the technology in a supporting capacity. https://www.td.org/Publications/Blogs/Learning-Technologies-Blog/2017/11/30-Percent-Harder-to-Design-for-the-Online-Learning-Environment

Why edtech companies should care about Amazon's emergence in education - Matthew Lynch, tech edvocate

Amazon is a recent newcomer to education, and edtech companies should take note and care about this new direction for the global retailer.  In an arena where Microsoft, Apple and Google have been the main players, Amazon is quickly moving ahead in education. As the world’s largest retailer, Amazon’s mission has been clear: reach out globally, put the customer first, and offer the greatest product selection with the best service. That’s what they are doing in education, too. Now edtech companies can take advantage of Amazon’s strategy by partnering with Amazon Web Services. http://www.thetechedvocate.org/edtech-companies-care-amazons-emergence-education/

Streamlining Access to Complex Data - David Raths, Campus Technology

Business intelligence (BI) projects are only worthwhile if users derive tangible value from them. And campus decision-makers don't have the time to wade through complex reports, no matter how relevant the data. With that in mind, the BI team at George Washington University (DC) tapped into data visualization tools to create a dashboard tailored to the needs of busy college deans. The Dean's Dashboard is a collection of several high-level metrics from different business areas across the university. It is one result of a five-year process of creating an enterprise data warehouse and a culture of data stewardship across the university, as well as the deployment of an agile project management process that fosters incremental improvement. https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/11/09/streamlining-access-to-complex-data.aspx

Friday, November 17, 2017

OER will storm campuses in next 5 years - LAURA ASCIONE, eCampus News

Eighty-two percent of institutions say open educational resources (OER) will be an important source of course content in 5 years, according to a survey of CIOs detailed in an annual report that takes a look at campus IT. [Read last year’s Campus Computing results here “CIOS: 5 campus IT priorities for 2016 and beyond.“] The results of the report were released during the recent EDUCAUSE 2017 conference held in Philadelphia, Pa. This year saw small gains in formal institutions support for using OER in course materials, but faculty concerns remain about the quality of OER and updates surrounding the materials, according to the annual Campus Computing Project. https://www.ecampusnews.com/it-newsletter/report-oer-video-take-lead-campus/

Optimize your online course development process with these 5 tips - Nikos Andriotis, Talent LMS

The job of an online course creator is not an easy one. It involves balancing learning concepts backed by decades of research with the latest technology. The job also comes with adhering to a rigid process of instructional design. No matter how stringent the course development process may be, there are still ways for course development process optimization – which can make life a tad easier for course creators. https://www.talentlms.com/blog/tips-online-course-development-process-optimization/

How the technology behind Bitcoin could change marketing forever -  Jeremy Epstein, ClickZ

In the mid ‘90s, marketers heard about email and the web. Ten years later, it happened again, with Facebook and Twitter. Finally, they began to understand and adapt to the implications that customers are connected and empowered in a way previously unimaginable. Marketers who recognize that blockchains represent another seismic shift have a large opportunity in front of them. History may be repeating itself. https://www.clickz.com/blockchain-marketing-how-the-technology-behind-bitcoin-could-change-marketing-forever/114114/

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Texas A&M Offers Art History Video Game as Credit-Bearing Course - Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology

A video game about 15th and 16th century art is the center of a new course this fall at Texas A&M University. Offered in the College of Architecture's Department of Visualization, ARTS 489: World of Medici combines faculty-led lectures with ARTé: Mecenas, an art history game developed by Triseum in collaboration with the department's LIVE Lab to immerse students in the course subject matter. Students are given many attempts to complete the game, which requires them to learn and retain the course material as they build and maintain a financial empire in Medici-era Florence. Those who achieve 100 percent mastery in the game earn one credit hour. https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/11/08/texas-a-m-offers-art-history-video-game-as-credit-bearing-course.aspx

Universities should ban PowerPoint — It makes students stupid and professors boring - Paul Ralph, The Conversation

Do you really believe that watching a lecturer read hundreds of PowerPoint slides is making you smarter? I asked this of a class of 105 computer science and software engineering students last semester. An article in The Conversation argued universities should ban PowerPoint because it makes students stupid and professors boring. I agree entirely. http://www.businessinsider.com/universities-should-ban-powerpoint-it-makes-students-stupid-and-professors-boring-2015-6

TN Budget Hearings: College Tuition Hikes & A Warranty For Your Education - Chris Bundgaard, Local Memphis

“We have just issued a tuition recommendation of 0 to 3%, which I can assure you it is the envy of the region across the South; to be able to tell our students not only is it going to be 0-3%, its going to be 0-3% again,” says Mike Krause, Tennessee’s Higher Education Executive Director. Then there is word of an education warranty tossed out there by the Board of Regents Chancellor for the state's technical two-year schools. “It’s exactly what it sounds like. If you don't have the skill sets for which we say we have trained you, we will take you back and train you for free,” says Dr. Flora Tydings. The chancellor feels so confident, she hopes to soon give students a warranty card like this. The technical school warranty will also be dependent on the employer saying the student was not trained properly. http://www.localmemphis.com/news/local-news/tn-budget-hearings-college-tuition-hikes-a-warranty-for-your-education/852951104

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Campus Expands Effort to Make Course Materials Affordable - CSU Fullerton

Beginning in January, students at Cal State Fullerton have another choice when they select their college courses: to pick classes that offer free digital materials or low-cost print versions. With the passage of state Senate Bill 1359, all college campuses are required to highlight on their online course schedules those classes that exclusively use free digital materials or low-cost print versions. The effort is but one way the University is developing ways to help students get the courses and the materials they need to succeed in their educational goal of a college degree. Cal State Fullerton is one of 11 universities and schools across the nation taking part in the OpenStax Institutional Partnership Program to encourage the use of free, peer-reviewed textbooks and other Open Educational Resources — free digital teaching, learning and research materials — on campus. http://news.fullerton.edu/2017fa/Affordable-Course-Materials.aspx

10 Best Websites Like Coursera, Udacity and Other MOOCs - MEENA KRISHNAMSETTY, Insider Monkey

If you can overlook the lack of clout of an MOOC, then you’d actually be a prime learner. Gaining new skills for a lower price and shorter time than by going to University, look here: 10 best websites like Coursera, Udacity and other MOOCs. In addition to the self-satisfaction that accompanies newly acquired skills, you’re also more likely to land a job with a bigger salary and opportunities for further development. With the increase of technology and internet development, you can access that spectrum of information and knowledge anyplace and anytime. https://www.insidermonkey.com/blog/10-best-websites-like-coursera-udacity-and-other-moocs-521897/

Longhorns need fewer online learning tools, not more - SPENCER BUCKNER, Daily Texan

Students are well-adjusted to completing homework assignments online, watching lecture videos from the comfort of their room and checking their grades over the internet. Yet however useful they may be, the programs bring an unwelcome price.  It’s senseless to require students to pay for a single program used for attendance purposes, let alone three. Paid programs can, without a doubt, serve a vital role in expanding educational opportunities. What must be changed is the sheer number of programs that professors expect students to pay for. Quest, another online learning tool, and Squarecap were both developed either here at UT or by Longhorn alumni. Shouldn’t we support university-born programs and encourage their usage by our staff? Of course, these two programs alone can’t cover the needs of all professors on campus, but encouraging their standardization on campus would reduce both the inefficiency and cost of the laundry list of programs that Longhorns are currently expected to use. http://dailytexanonline.com/2017/11/07/longhorns-need-fewer-online-learning-tools-not-more