Educational Technology

April 11, 2021

Has the Pandemic Set Female Leadership Back?

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Knowledge at Wharton

About 2.3 million women have exited the U.S. labor force since the pandemic began, compared with about 1.8 million men, according to government data. Many were driven out by layoffs in food service, health care, and hospitality — sectors that employ a majority of women and that have been most affected by the economic slowdown. Others left their jobs voluntarily, forced to stay home and care for children suddenly unable to attend school or daycare. As a result, female participation in the workforce has dropped to 57%, a level not seen since 1988. The situation is dire enough that U.S. President Joe Biden called it “a national emergency.” With schools reopening and vaccines becoming more widely available, there is light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, but questions remain about whether working women will recover from such a deep setback.

https://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article/pandemic-set-female-leadership-back/

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Report: Research Support Funding Faces Risk

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Rick Seltzer, Inside Higher Ed

A new report on U.S. academic research budgets concludes that research enablement and support functions — which under federally awarded research grants are reimbursed under indirect cost rates negotiated by universities — face risk. The nonprofit research and strategy group Ithaka S+R released the report today, examining budget issues the scientific research field faces. It found that externally funded research has been the most resilient major revenue source for large universities during the pandemic.

https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2021/02/25/report-research-support-funding-faces-risk

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Microsoft launches next stage of skills initiative after helping 30 million people

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MicrosoftTo access newly available tools and resources, job seekers can visit opportunity.linkedin.com to begin pursuing in-demand technology skills for free across LinkedIn, Microsoft Learn and GitHub. In addition to using data to understand the most in-demand roles, Microsoft will share that data with governments so they can better understand the issues and we’ll use our voice on employment and training public policy issues around the world.Microsoft will provide financial grants and technical support to nonprofit organizations to enable our skilling initiative for 5 million unemployed workers who need it most.

https://news.microsoft.com/skills/

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April 10, 2021

Bucking the Status Quo in the Aftermath of the Pandemic

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Michael Bugeja, Tomorrow’s Professor

As students delay or reconsider attending college, academic departments must reinvent themselves. Universities have no other option but to explore immediate remedies. In 2021, the future of higher education looks bleak, with mounting student debt and lower enrollments exacerbated by economic shortfalls due to COVID-19. That dreary outlook will prevail for years to come if institutions insist on business as usual. The prototype for the reinvented institution values everyone, with a primary focus on student learning and affordability.

https://tomprof.stanford.edu/posting/1860

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Generation COVID will embrace digital revolution with support

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:36 am

Nathan Schultz, the Age (AU)

In a university sector used to gradual change, COVID-19 has brought an overnight revolution as numbers of overseas students fall and revenue suffers. When the government announced in June major changes to universities’ funding, including a 113 per cent price rise for humanities courses, Centre Alliance’s Rebekha Sharkie warned this could lead to “whole faculties gutted”. With undergraduates taking all their courses online during lockdown, it is likely that COVID-19 will further expedite a move away from the “traditional university experience”. The class of COVID-19 – the first to grow up as “digital natives” – are well prepared for this change.

https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/generation-covid-will-embrace-digital-revolution-with-support-20210211-p571lv.html

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CWRU’s Siegal Lifelong Learning responds to pandemic demands with virtual courses

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Case Western Reserve

Some things, such as restaurants and movie theaters, have been hurt by the pandemic, while others — namely Zoom — have grown and thrived. Siegal Lifelong Learning at Case Western Reserve University can be placed in the category of things that have thrived. In the days before COVID-19, Siegal was known for helping people who wanted to delve further into topics of interest and enrich their lives through in-person classes and lectures. Early on in the pandemic in March 2020, Siegal — which already had a lineup of in-person courses and lectures planned — moved to adapt to the times and the growing need for online learning.  The result has been that its online learning courses have attracted a more varied and far-reaching audience.

https://www.cleveland.com/community/2021/03/cwrus-siegal-lifelong-learning-responds-to-pandemic-demands-with-virtual-courses-sees-growth.html

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April 9, 2021

Challenges of a break-free semester of virtual learning

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Julie Bobyock, TNH

It’s no secret that attending college during a pandemic is difficult. Hours of Zoom classes and meetings, and online homework, projects, and exams have changed student life on campus all over the nation – and have also affected student mental health. While spring breaks have been cancelled at colleges all throughout the country in order to keep communities safe, including University of New Hampshire (UNH), a college semester without a break has seemed to increase the stress levels on campuses.

https://tnhdigital.com/2021/03/26/challenges-of-a-break-free-semester-of-virtual-learning/

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Why online learning could be key to closing the STEM gender gap

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:31 am

Silicon Republic
Coursera’s Anthony Tattersall discusses the importance of closing the gender gap in STEM industries and how online learning could help. STEM subjects have long-standing problems with proper gender representation. A recent report by the World Economic Forum highlights that just 30pc of STEM researchers are women, men publish more than their female colleagues and women are paid significantly less.Closing this gap is vital. Careers in STEM are critical in shaping the world we live in. But how do we get there? Experts say the way academic curricula are designed can make an important difference. With the rise of online learning as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, we should look at how this particular medium can help. Here are a few ways in which online learning can support us in closing the STEM gender gap in higher education.

https://www.siliconrepublic.com/careers/online-learning-stem-gender-gap

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April 8, 2021

Poll: Nearly half of parents don’t want their kids to go straight to a four-year college

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:41 am

JILL BARSHAY,
Hechinger ReportA Gallup survey, commissioned by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, a philanthropic foundation, and released April 7, 2021, found that 46 percent of parents said they would prefer not to send their children to a four-year college after high school, even if there were no obstacles, financial or otherwise. Only a slim majority of parents — 54 percent — still prefer a four-year college for their children. In lieu of a four-year college, 16 percent of parents said they were interested in non-college vocational training and 22 percent said they preferred to see their children consider an array of other options, including starting a business, joining the military, getting a job or doing community service.

https://hechingerreport.org/poll-nearly-half-of-parents-dont-want-their-kids-to-go-to-a-four-year-college/

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Five Reasons Online Learning Is The Future Of Professional Development

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Fahim ul Haq, Forbes

Online education has been on the rise for the last decade, and the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated its widespread use in unprecedented ways, particularly for professional career advancement. Degree-based programs and expensive learning and development (L&D) initiatives are no longer required to foster an efficient ongoing training environment for those seeking career advancement. Online learning has its own unique advantages and disadvantages, but the disadvantages alone are no reason to shy away from this education revolution.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2021/03/26/five-reasons-online-learning-is-the-future-of-professional-development/

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College students sue universities, ask for refunds over online learning

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:34 am

ABC News

Students at the University of Oregon and Oregon State are filing proposed class action lawsuits demanding a refund, saying they didn’t get what they paid for when the schools transition to online instruction. Now, the three students involved in the lawsuits want their money back.

https://abc7ny.com/education/students-sue-universities-ask-for-refunds-over-online-learning/10444926/

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Now is the time to rethink undergraduate education in the liberal arts

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JEAN-PAUL BOUDREAU, University Affairs

While our 20th-century models of education celebrated specialization, it is becoming clear that no one profession or technology or set of skills is capable of navigating the inscrutable way ahead. Instead, I believe the 21st century belongs to the thinkers: the agile, inquisitive, empathetic, and counterintuitive collaborators who embrace a diversity of knowledge. These are tomorrow’s changemakers and entrepreneurs, who both ask, “What if?” and answer, “Here’s how.” So where will we find these minds? Primarily, in undergraduate liberal arts institutions across this country: the place where ideas are our lifeblood and critical and creative thinking our consequence.

https://www.universityaffairs.ca/opinion/in-my-opinion/now-is-the-time-to-rethink-undergraduate-education-in-the-liberal-arts/

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April 7, 2021

From Badging to Blockchain: Documenting Skills Learned

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 9:41 am

Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Education

Increasingly, higher education is placed in the position of updating and upgrading the curriculum to ensure that students are prepared for the careers of today — not those of yesterday or those careers that will never materialize due to the impact of artificial intelligence, shifting societal needs and the changing economy of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). Clearly, the pressure is on for universities to respond.  The University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) has recently released the “Hallmarks of Excellence in Credential Innovation” that explores the emerging best practices and considerations for effective and efficient credentialing.Failure to adequately prepare students for the current job market will result in accelerating the steady decline in enrollments that we have seen over the past decade.

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/blogs/online-trending-now/badging-blockchain-documenting-skills-learned

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The Future of Learning Begins and Ends with Learning Data: An Interview with Cathy O’Bryan

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:40 am

John O’Brien, EDUCAUSE Review

The new CEO of Unizin discusses the offerings, advantages, partnerships, and future of the higher education consortium. In October 2020, Cathy O’Bryan was named CEO of Unizin. A consortium of higher education institutions, Unizin enables its members to meet the moment of digital transformation by developing and delivering solutions that address the pressing and complex challenges of data, analytics, and digital content. Through its consortium model and partnerships, Unizin builds technology solutions, establishes relationships, and pursues research that no single institution could achieve cost-effectively on its own.

https://er.educause.edu/articles/2021/3/the-future-of-learning-begins-and-ends-with-learning-data-an-interview-with-cathy-obryan

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Federal Cyber Security 800-171 Compliance on the Horizon

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:35 am

Jarret Cummings, EDUCAUSE Review

A few days before Christmas last year, Federal Student Aid (FSA), an office of the US Department of Education (ED), released a notice providing a high-level overview of its cybersecurity compliance plans. FSA posted the notice with little warning or opportunity to provide feedback in advance.  The notice begins with FSA announcing its intention to establish a Campus Cybersecurity Program framework. At this point, what FSA means by a “Campus Cybersecurity Program” remains unclear, as does the role, if any, that higher education cybersecurity leaders and professionals might play in its development and application. The notice does make clear, however, that the NIST SP 800-171 controlled unclassified information (CUI) guidelines will form the foundation of the program that FSA is envisioning:

https://er.educause.edu/articles/2021/3/800-171-compliance-on-the-horizon

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Got Terrible Internet Speeds? The FCC Wants to Hear About It

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Michael Kan, PC Mag

If you’ve long struggled with slow broadband speeds, the FCC wants to hear about it. The agency is now collecting input from US consumers concerning actual broadband availability where they live, rather than merely relying on data from internet service providers.“Far too many Americans are left behind in access to jobs, education, and healthcare if they do not have access to broadband,” Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said in a statement. “Collecting data from consumers who are directly affected by the lack of access to broadband will help inform the FCC’s mapping efforts and future decisions about where service is needed.”

https://www.pcmag.com/news/got-terrible-internet-speeds-the-fcc-wants-to-hear-about-it

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April 6, 2021

Moving Online Learning from Challenge to Opportunity

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:40 am

Mark Lombardi, Campus Technology

Necessity is the mother of invention. And within the context of a global pandemic, necessity was the mother of wholesale transformation. The monumental challenges educators overcame in 2020 is astounding. From preschool to grad school, the race to adopt and adapt online learning platforms hit a pace and scale previously unimagined.Now, as we consider the post-pandemic academic landscape, one thing is sure: Online learning isn’t going anywhere. To think otherwise is a massive failure of imagination.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2021/03/17/moving-online-learning-from-challenge-to-opportunity.aspx

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Online learning poses new challenges, advantages for faculty with disabilities, those in the Deaf community

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:35 am

Emily Stevenson, Detroit Free Press

Boston University faculty and staff members who have disabilities and those in the Deaf and Hard of hearing community have had varied experiences throughout the pandemic — some have enjoyed increased flexibility, while others have found new restraints with online learning. Kara Jackman, archivist and preservation librarian at the School of Theology library, said the pandemic has had a variety of positive effects for her.

https://dailyfreepress.com/2021/03/22/online-learning-poses-new-challenges-advantages-for-faculty-with-disabilities-those-in-the-deaf-community/

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Students from UO, OSU go to court seeking refunds for online learning

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:29 am

Jeff Manning | The Oregonian/OregonLive

Three students have filed class-action lawsuits against Oregon’s two largest colleges claiming they were charged full-price for online classes of poorer quality than traditional in-person classes. When the University of Oregon and Oregon State University shut down their campuses due to the pandemic, they did not offer to refund any or all of students’ tuition bills. “In order to provide quality education now and in the future, we cannot discount tuition,” the University of Oregon states on its website.

https://www.oregonlive.com/education/2021/03/students-from-uo-osu-go-to-court-seeking-refunds-for-online-learning.html

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April 5, 2021

Why Teams Are the Key to Beating Burnout

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:40 am

Knowledge at Wharton

In Beating Burnout at Work: Why Teams Hold the Secret to Well-Being and Resilience, Paula Davis, founder of the Stress & Resilience Institute, explores a new solution to the burnout problem at work: a comprehensive approach focused on building the resilience of teams of all sizes. Davis argues that teams, and their leaders, are uniquely positioned to create the type of cultures that are needed to prevent burnout.

https://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article/why-teams-are-the-key-to-beating-burnout/

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Over 27,000 students share how colleges and universities could improve digital learning

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:34 am

Jisc

A Jisc survey of 27,069 higher and further education students reveals that most are pleased with their digital learning, but areas such as wellbeing, mental health and staff digital skills need more attention. Between October and December 2020, 21,697 higher education (HE) students and 5,372 in further education (FE) took part in Jisc’s digital experience insights student survey. The surveys seek to support the sector in adapting and responding to the changing situation as a result of COVID–19 policies.

https://www.jisc.ac.uk/news/over-27000-students-share-how-colleges-and-universities-could-improve-digital-learning-08-mar-2021

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