Pushed to go to college at an early age, many students fall into an artificial kind of competitiveness that encourages shortcuts to academic success. In high school, they study for a smorgasbord of standardized tests, they sometimes cheat, their helicopter parents coddle them, and they’re jammed through the educational system without having learned to love learning for learning’s sake. By the time they get to college, they’re not interested in academics, they’re interested in perfunctorily obtaining their diplomas and partying their way to graduation.
Expect to see some of the $500 billion a year currently spent on college tuition winding up in Silicon Valley, at institutions that offer career education, measure and ensure excellent student outcomes, and mix online and offline approaches.
Assessment is complex, but it’s not complicated. Stop the grim march. Stand still for a time. Think about learning and what assessment really means and then pick a new proactive direction to travel with colleagues.
A collection of readings on open education with commentary. Created for IPT 515R Introduction to Open Education, a graduate course at Brigham Young University. An Open Education Reader is published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Emran Mian argues for standardisation in setting of exams. He believes that when universities award their own degrees, they become providers of a monopoly good. And when every provider behaves like a monopolist then students lose out.
Free speech. College affordability. The value of a degree. Student athletes behaving badly. The seemingly dismal track record of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Administrative mishandling allegations of sexual assault. It was an up and down year for higher education, as each of these matters took a turn atop the 24-hour news cycle.
The Government Accountability Office office has released a report criticizing accrediting agencies’ efforts to oversee academic quality at colleges, and faulting the Education Department for not increasing its own scrutiny of colleges that are under accreditors’ sanctions. Colleges must be accredited by a federally recognized accreditor in order to receive federal student aid.
In 2015 we are likely to see such a full-blown invasion and transformation of higher education. This will have profound and beneficial consequences for the education and finances of millions of young Americans and their parents.
Higher education practitioners would be wise to limit their dependency on taxpayer dollars. We must all follow the time-tested business practices that have driven this nation's economy since the pilgrims landed in 1620.
American higher education urgently needs a college learning assessment system, but not one that equates student learning with disciplinary knowledge alone. Rather, it needs a way to account for the higher-order capacities and skills that are the hallmarks of a liberal education.
State and national leaders need to “put efforts to bolster completion on a new trajectory” by analyzing the extent to which policies support the colleges that are trying to do right by their students, and then redesigning policy environments to help institutions introduce comprehensive and integrated reform strategies that change every aspect of what they do. This report identifies specific strategies for states to follow. Here is the Executive Summary;
Say hello to the On Demand Model, which is based on the premise that institutions are going to require new technologies that provide “innovative capabilities for engagement and delivery” thanks to the super storm.