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The evolution of learning environments

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2018-09-27 17:10

Dante Mills, IUS Horizon

The learning experience in traditional classes and online classes tends to differ due to various educational approaches used.. But how drastic is this difference? Naturally, with anything, there are pros and cons. We asked IUS students their opinions about taking classes online or on campus. “During summer, I would prefer online classes, because I get to spend my summer not trapped in classrooms, but I would prefer on-campus classes during fall and spring semesters,” Kiko Dixon, junior, said. IUS alumnus Brodie Hillegas had a different opinion.  “I would prefer to take classes on campus,” Hillegas said. “When you take classes online it takes more willpower.”

The evolution of learning environments

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U. of Pennsylvania Says It Will Be First Ivy to Offer Online Bachelor’s Degree

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2018-09-27 17:05

By Beth McMurtrie, Chronicle of Higher Ed
The U. of Pennsylvania’s new bachelor’s-degree program, aimed at nontraditional students, illustrates the growing credibility and popularity of online education. Starting next fall, the University of Pennsylvania will offer what it says is the first online bachelor’s degree at an Ivy League college, an illustration of the growing credibility and popularity of online education. Designed for adult learners, the program will confer a bachelor of applied arts and sciences, and will enroll students through the School of Arts and Sciences’ College of Liberal and Professional Studies, which serves working adults and other nontraditional students.

https://www.chronicle.com/article/U-of-Pennsylvania-Says-It/244558

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Licence to learn, with online courses

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2018-09-27 17:03

by B S Balaji, Deccan Herald

As Malcolm Knowles, the American adult educator, had pointed out motivation is key to adult learning or andragogy. In fact, the fundamental assumptions of andragogy form an important basis for MOOC. In traditional schooling, most of the students little or no freedom and flexibility to learn outside the curriculum prescribed by the respective boards. Although many parents insist that their wards learn more than what is taught in the classroom, it is not the norm.

https://www.deccanherald.com/supplements/dh-education/licence-learn-online-courses-693461.html

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President Speaks: Staying high-touch in a high-tech college world

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2018-09-26 17:25

By George Hagerty, Education Dive
George Hagerty is the president of Beacon College in Leesburg, Florida.  For many of us, our enthusiastic embrace of the latest technological conveniences has moved from “shiny-new-thing” novelty to indispensable daily companion: a sure harbinger of the growing role artificial intelligence will play in our lives.  It can be argued that few sectors have been more disrupted or transformed by technology than higher education — given our dual responsibilities as both transmitters and creators of knowledge. But when conversations on campus inevitably turn to the acquisition and application of new technology — deliberations further complicated by strategic purposes, cost implications and political overtones — we must safeguard against mistaking electronic-based systems as ends unto themselves, in favor of what they are: tools to benefit the delivery and quality of instruction and services.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/president-speaks-staying-high-touch-in-a-high-tech-college-world/532535/

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Average Loan Debt for Graduates of Four-Year Colleges: $28,650

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2018-09-26 17:17

by Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed
The average student loan debt last year for graduates of four-year colleges who took out loans was $28,650, according to the latest version of an annual report from the Institute for College Access and Success (TICAS). The average amount was up $300, or 1 percent, from 2016. Figures from the report were based on debt levels from college seniors who graduated from public and private colleges last year. Roughly two-thirds (65 percent) of this group took on at least some student debt. “While student loans can be an excellent investment, there is a crisis among the millions of students who struggle to repay their loans, and they are disproportionately students of color or from low-income families,” James Kvaal, the group’s president, said in a written statement. “We need to invest more in student aid and in colleges to reduce students’ need to borrow, and make their loans easier to repay.”

https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2018/09/20/average-loan-debt-graduates-four-year-colleges-28650

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OpenStax Adds Business Textbook Series

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2018-09-26 17:15

By Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology
Nearly all of the courses for students earning an Associate of Arts degree in business will soon be covered by a free OpenStax textbook, thanks to a series of six new introductory business textbooks being produced by the Rice University-based publisher of open educational resources. The series includes texts for Introduction to Business, Business Ethics, Principles of Management, Entrepreneurship, Principles of Accounting and Organizational Behavior — all courses taught at most colleges and universities in the United States, according to a news announcement, and typically required courses for degres in business or related fields.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2018/09/18/openstax-adds-business-textbook-series.aspx

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Google Curriculum, College Credit

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2018-09-26 17:11

by Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed

Tech giant gets hands-on with its new online IT certificate, as a growing number of community colleges and Northeastern University create credit pathways with the curriculum. Google made its first substantial foray into postsecondary education in January, with the creation of a new online certificate program aimed at people who are interested in working in entry-level IT support roles. “It’s a whole new marketplace, and it’s driven by the employers and the students,” said Ray Schroeder, associate vice chancellor for online learning at the University of Illinois at Springfield. “These companies for the most part don’t want to get into education. They’re going to do it because it needs to be done.”

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/article/2018/09/26/growing-number-colleges-partner-google-offer-credit-its-new-it

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Penn to offer Ivy League’s first online bachelor’s degree

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2018-09-26 17:05

By James Paterson, Education Dive
The University of Pennsylvania will become the first Ivy League college to offer an online bachelor’s degree with the launch of an interdisciplinary program next fall aimed at working adults and other nontraditional learners. Offered through the School of Arts and Sciences’ College of Liberal and Professional Studies (LPS), the applied arts and sciences degree encompasses general education courses and interdisciplinary concentrations as well as two on-campus experiences. The program will take a different approach to instruction than traditional residential courses by using the unique properties of e-learning, officials said. An advisory board of management executives is working with LPS to advise on workforce trends and skills needs.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/penn-to-offer-ivy-leagues-first-online-bachelors-degree/532805/

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As students return to college, a basic question persists: What are they learning?

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2018-09-26 17:02

by John Marcus, Hechinger Report

“When you look at college mission statements, they’re loaded with grand pronouncements about the skills and habits of mind they’re going to inspire in their students,” said Alexander McCormick, an associate professor of educational leadership and policy studies at Indiana University Bloomington. Yet “even as they teach their students to back up their claims with evidence, they don’t have much evidence to back up those claims.”  “What students are supposed to be doing or learning diverges wildly,” said Nate Johnson, founder and principal consultant of the firm Postsecondary Analytics, who follows this. “You have students majoring in everything from philosophy to heating and air-conditioning repair to accounting. Even if you had measurable assessments in all those different areas, adding them up to say students made X amount of progress isn’t the same as what you can say about 9-year-olds or 10-year-olds hitting certain benchmarks in reading.”

As students return to college, a basic question persists: What are they learning?

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Students can go around the world and beyond through virtual reality

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2018-09-25 17:24

By Addie Fairley, The State Press
Virtual reality could be a dream come true, or a nightmare in the flesh. It could be anything that it is programmed to be with no real limitations. ASU, with its everlasting call to innovation, has started to utilize VR goggles for an online biology lab. ASU has partnered with Google and Labster, a virtual lab simulation company specifically dedicated toward education STEM subject matters, to give students in an online Biology 181 class the ability to view traditional lab situations. The students can purchase their own VR headsets or borrow a pair from the school. There are currently 30 students in the course, and there’s potential for expansion.

http://www.statepress.com/article/2018/09/spscience-class-on-the-moon-the-future-of-virtual-reality-in-education

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Equity Problems with Technology Persist Despite Adoption Gains

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2018-09-25 17:20

By Sara Friedman, THE Journal
When it comes to preparing students for the future, two-thirds of parents endorse the idea of digital tools in the classroom, but 51 percent of parents are concerned that technology varies too much from teacher to teacher, class to class or subject to subject, according to a new report. These findings come from the Project Tomorrow’s 2017 Speak Up Research Project for Digital Learning, which surveyed 340,927 students, 34,833 teachers and 23,159 parents. The report was released at a Sept. 12 Congressional briefing where students, teachers and administrators spoke about how they use technology in their classrooms. The survey was conducted between October 2017 and January 2018. “Our real objective is to be an engine of change in schools and districts. We want to stimulate new ideas in schools and districts. We want to have actionable knowledge that people can use,” said Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow and lead researcher on Speak Up.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2018/09/13/equity-problems-with-technology-persist-despite-adoption-gains.aspx

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Coursera’s CEO on the Evolving Meaning of ‘MOOC’

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2018-09-25 17:14

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

What we see is just a huge blending. Right now we offer MOOCs, we offer specializations (packages of those single courses), we offer master tracks, which are those modules that count towards a degree. We only have three right now, but we’re going to be building up that library. And then we have degrees now. I talk to people who take who take a MOOC on blockchain. All they wanted was about 10 hours of very high-quality instruction. They didn’t need a degree. They literally just wanted to learn the material. Those kinds of people are not going to buy a degree. Then there are people who get a degree, and you’re like, “Why didn’t you take a bunch of MOOCs?” Because the degrees help them get a better job. So long as we believe there will be a range of needs from very, very rigorous and that ends up in a high-pedigreed credential to smaller learning that nevertheless teaches you something that’s really important, there’s absolutely no reason that MOOCs won’t exist and degrees won’t exist with a link between them. I think it’s going to be a continuum.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2018/09/12/courseras-ceo-on-the-evolving-meaning-of-mooc.aspx

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New learning opportunities for displaced persons

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2018-09-25 17:10

by MIT Open Learning
This week, the MIT Refugee Action Hub (ReACT) announced that it is now accepting applications for the second offering of the Certificate Program in Computer and Data Science. The one-year course of study is designed for refugees and other displaced people around the world, and offers them the opportunity to earn a certificate in a rigorous, yet accessible program that allows young adults to reactivate their potential and restart careers. The inaugural group of students will be completing their studies in January 2019. The blended program will continue to offer a core online curriculum of the edX catalogue along with an immersive set of in-person workshops and classes offered by MIT faculty and staff. These offerings include an entrepreneurship program, led by the MIT Bootcamps and a MakerLab run by the Little Devices Lab. Admir Masic, faculty lead and the Esther and Harold E. Edgerton Career Development Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, founded ReACT in 2017 with a mission to provide blended learning opportunities to refugees around the world.

http://news.mit.edu/2018/mit-react-expands-learning-opportunities-refugees-displaced-populations-0921

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Furor Over Blended and Active Learning

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2018-09-25 17:05

by Mark Lieberman, Inside Higher Ed
Business students at the University of Central Florida agitate for alternatives to a model that heavily shifts their learning time to outside the classroom. Students in the University of Central Florida’s College of Business this week have gotten more than 1,800 signatures on a petition criticizing the college’s recent shift to a blended and active learning classroom model that some students describe as onerous and not conducive to learning. The business college, meanwhile, is standing behind its changes, arguing they’re sound and well intentioned from a pedagogical perspective, and more well liked by students than the petition suggests.

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/article/2018/09/21/blended-learning-model-university-central-florida-draws-business

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Professors find ways to prevent cheating for online classes

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2018-09-25 17:02

By: Natassia Henry, Daily Toreador

Many students may think professors are not aware of the various cheating tactics students try, but Lisa Low, assistant professor of practice in public relations at Texas Tech, said that could not be further from the truth. “Very few (professors) are not, not aware of the many ways to collude,” Low said. Professors are understanding when it comes to the lifestyles of students. Low said if students are in a jam, it is better for them to talk to their professor rather than cheat, because once a student cheats, the professors are obligated to report it. Once that is done, it is no longer in the hands of the professor.

http://www.dailytoreador.com/news/professors-find-ways-to-prevent-cheating-for-online-classes/article_74838ffa-bdc1-11e8-81c8-d72d20ca3dc0.html

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Federal court rules against Betsy DeVos in student loan lawsuit over for-profit colleges fraud cases

News & Thoughts - Mon, 2018-09-24 17:24

by Maria Danilova, Associated Press
A federal court has ruled that it was “arbitrary and capricious” for Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to delay an Obama-era rule meant to protect students swindled by for-profit colleges. The decision is a significant blow to the Trump administration’s attempt to ease regulations for the industry. A judge in the nation’s capital ruled on Wednesday in favor of Democratic attorneys general from 19 states and the District of Columbia and former students. They had sued DeVos over her decision last year to postpone the rules finalized under President Barack Obama.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/ct-betsy-devos-student-loan-lawsuit-for-profit-colleges-fraud-20180913-story.html

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Education is not preparing students for a fast-changing world

News & Thoughts - Mon, 2018-09-24 17:20

By Ann Kirschner and Dana Born, Boston Globe

VUCA stands for “volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous,” a handy shortcut used by the military to describe these uncertain times, and a framework to shape its leadership programs. We have a graduation gap, an employment gap, and a skills gap. These are global trends but perhaps most acute in the United States, where we have championed college education for all at the same time that we have not paid enough attention to the link between learning and earning. The false choice between vocational training and the lofty devotion to the life of the mind is particularly damaging to first-generation college students with no parental safety net or networks of their own. Career services remain the Siberia of most college campuses, visited rarely and woefully under-resourced.

https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2018/09/12/education-not-preparing-students-for-fast-changing-world/96vTGowaDypumwyLtPtLjP/story.html

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Teaming Up to Get Workers Ready for Technology of the Future

News & Thoughts - Mon, 2018-09-24 17:14

By Ellen Rosen, The New York Times

The partnership is one of 14 across the country focusing on emerging technologies and industries addressing an increasingly important and frequently vexing question: how to prepare workers at all levels — technicians as well as people with doctoral degrees — for new technologies, like integrated photonics, that are in development, but only at the very early stages of commercial use. “Because the jobs don’t exist yet, we need to train students in the skills that are relevant today so they can get a job, but at the same time, very selectively, begin to supplement the training relevant to new industries,” said Sajan Saini, the education director of the AIM Photonics Academy, which is based at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass.

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/11/business/training-tech-workers-for-future.html

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Virginia Beach schools using Virtual Learning Days in aftermath of Florence

News & Thoughts - Mon, 2018-09-24 17:10

by 13 News Now
Virginia Beach City Public Schools is preparing to utilize three Virtual Learning Days to make up for three days-worth of missed classes due to Hurricane Florence. The school system canceled school for four days as residents prepared for the storm’s landfall. Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence has waived the fourth day for students by using time built into the school year.

https://www.13newsnow.com/article/news/education/virginia-beach-schools-using-virtual-learning-days-in-aftermath-of-florence/291-595556102

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President Speaks: Staying high-touch in a high-tech college world

News & Thoughts - Mon, 2018-09-24 17:05

By George Hagerty, Education Dive
George Hagerty is the president of Beacon College in Leesburg, Florida.  For many of us, our enthusiastic embrace of the latest technological conveniences has moved from “shiny-new-thing” novelty to indispensable daily companion: a sure harbinger of the growing role artificial intelligence will play in our lives.  It can be argued that few sectors have been more disrupted or transformed by technology than higher education — given our dual responsibilities as both transmitters and creators of knowledge. But when conversations on campus inevitably turn to the acquisition and application of new technology — deliberations further complicated by strategic purposes, cost implications and political overtones — we must safeguard against mistaking electronic-based systems as ends unto themselves, in favor of what they are: tools to benefit the delivery and quality of instruction and services.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/president-speaks-staying-high-touch-in-a-high-tech-college-world/532535/

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