"Our government should allow academic research in and about Iran, rather than create obstacles for scholars to conduct research on the ground. We should be encouraged to know and do more, not less – otherwise, our picture of Iranian society will remain a static two-dimensional image with no depth and complexity. "
Rachel Cheeseman's insight:
Strict VISA requirements and other burdens have made international study, and all its associated benefits, painfully difficult. The result has been to keep more domestic scholars from traveling and fewer international scholars from coming to our nation, cutting off valuable opportunities for transnational exchange and engagement.
Over the last year I've been stuck by how most debates about MOOCs, and MOOC platform providers, are remarkably national in orientation. In the US, for example, a surprising number of politicians and select 'disruptive innovation' consultants have framed MOOCs as a vehicle to help redress the fiscal challenges facing public higher education. This (the MOOC as fiscal challenge solution) is a mug's game, though, as anyone involved in developing and running online courses (as I am for both regular credit classes and a MOOC) will tell you for they are resource intensive to both develop and run well. MOOCs are great for some things, and worse for others, but they are not going to save universities money by functioning as a silver bullet for the legacy impacts of austerity.
Many students at public universities qualify as "independent," and while this does not mean they aren't receiving financial help from their families, it does change the economic demographics of the campus, suggesting that further subsidies for public universities are far from "a gift to the rich."
"In the last 25 years, student enrollment at state universities across America has grown by 62 percent, while total public funding has increased by only 2 percent. Consequently, state funding per student has dropped by 30 percent in those 25 years."
Rachel Cheeseman's insight:
Bill Powers, President of UT Austin and Chairman of the Association of American Universities argues that even as universities spend less and spend more strategically, federal and state investment will have to increase for universities to serve the growing student body.
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