What Classes Should I Take?

September 5th, 2015

By Laura Helmuth, Slate

We at Slate have a lot of opinions about the most worthwhile classes you can take in high school, college, and adult education, and like anybody, we like to give unsolicited advice, so welcome to our week of guidance counseling! We’re rolling out 17 class recommendations, starting with five today. These are the classes that taught us the most important lessons—even if we didn’t realize it at the time. Take a look at this week’s schedule, below. What’d we miss? On the final day of this series, we’ll collect readers’ best advice. Please let us know what was the most important class you ever took—or the one you wish you’d taken. Email us at classes@slate.com with up to 200 words advocating for your class. And please add your recommendations to the comments section or share them on Twitter using the hashtag #TakeThisClass.

http://www.slate.com/articles/life/classes/2015/08/what_classes_should_i_take_geology_coding_geography_math_poetry_acting_anatomy.html

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Colleges embrace the question ‘How can we do that online?’

September 5th, 2015

By Amy Lane, Crain’s Detroit Business

“The challenge is keeping up with the pace of advances, and technology, and try not to follow the fads, and just stick to what is good for our students, and their success ultimately,” said Ahmad Ezzeddine, associate vice president for educational outreach and international programs at Wayne State University. One approach to improved online learning is to present course information in smaller segments, Ezzeddine said. “When someone is online, the attention span is a lot shorter. You need to maintain the interest of students, so having them watch a three-hour lecture is not going to be effective,” he said. Students want “more action-oriented learning, in smaller doses,” and clear relevance, said Ed Borbely, director of the University of Michigan’s Integrative Systems and Design graduate degree-granting division housed in the College of Engineering. “There’s less tolerance for ‘Just sit back, someday you might use this.’ ”

http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20150830/NEWS/308309995/colleges-embrace-the-question-how-can-we-do-that-online

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Massive online courses grow; what’s in it for the universities?

September 5th, 2015

by Kirk Pinho, Crain’s Detroit

Depending on whom you ask, universities benefit in a few different ways. For some, the upside is that the courses may sow seeds for the MOOC students to eventually enroll at the university, generating revenue. For others, there are educational benefits in that they give professors a sort of educational sandbox in which they can experiment with new and emerging methods of delivering content and course themes. And some argue that the benefit is largely social in nature by offering high-level educational opportunities to a group of students that may otherwise be unable to afford them. “They provide the general populace with an opportunity to have lifelong learning experiences and exposure to new content,” said Geralyn Stephens, associate professor, clinical, in teacher education in Wayne State University’s College of Education.

http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20150830/NEWS/308309998/massive-online-courses-grow-whats-in-it-for-the-universities

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Getting an MBA while you’re on the road: How to pull it off

September 4th, 2015

by Anne Fisher, Fortune

Studying on the fly will present some challenges, but it can be done. Lara Martini, who is Microsoft’s director of commercial markets strategy for Latin America, finished her MBA last fall despite traveling more than half the time. (In fact, when I spoke to her, she was at the airport in Miami, headed for Bogota.) “Travel is really the main reason most of my fellow students and I were enrolled in online programs,” she says. “People have become accustomed to working remotely, so this is really an extension of that.”

http://fortune.com/2015/08/28/mba-business-school-online/

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More work needed in blending online and onsite learning

September 4th, 2015

by Peta Lee, University World News

Although the traditional lecture hall is unlikely to ever disappear completely, it is increasingly being supplemented – and in some cases replaced – by technology. And while a combination of both online and onsite learning as a teaching means is proving successful, more work is needed for this combination to truly internationalise the global learning experience. The digital revolution has turned conventional teaching and studying on its head, affecting students, academics and campuses worldwide. The role of digital learning is analysed in Internationalisation of Higher Education, a study focusing on 10 countries from within Europe and seven from without, commissioned by the European Parliament committee on culture and education.

http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=2015082715255084

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New qualitative research explores students’ MOOC concerns

September 4th, 2015

By Tara García Mathewson, Education Dive

A new qualitative study asks traditional college students what they think about massive open online courses, finding a number of concerns that mirror those of administrators. According to eCampus News, the students found reason for concern when it comes to the accuracy of course content and instructor quality, responding that it is nice that people with information can share it in a MOOC platform but also a drawback to the system because their teaching materials are not necessarily peer-reviewed. Almost a quarter of interviewees said outcomes were a major concern, pointing to course credit for MOOCs as a way to legitimize them for students.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/new-qualitative-research-explores-students-mooc-concerns/404459/

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Penn State launches new program to teach grad students to teach online

September 3rd, 2015

By Hilary Appelman, Penn State

Graduate students traditionally teach the way they were taught. But more and more they are finding themselves teaching in online classrooms, where the old rules don’t necessarily apply. A new Graduate Student Online Teaching Certificate program is being offered to Penn State graduate students for the first time this fall with the goal of improving the quality of instruction online. Larry Boggess, director of online faculty development for Penn State World Campus, had hoped to attract 30 students to the course. So far, more than 350 have enrolled from across Penn State’s colleges and campuses.

http://news.psu.edu/story/367847/2015/09/02/academics/penn-state-launches-new-program-teach-grad-students-teach-online

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Penn State Starts Network for Entrepreneurs With Focus on Online Learning

September 3rd, 2015

by Mary Ellen McIntire, Chronicle of Higher Ed

Education-technology companies are hot these days. So are online programs by universities. Pennsylvania State University hopes to tap into both trends with a new effort to turn its campus into an innovation hub for ed-tech companies. The effort is called the EdTech Network, and officials hope it will spark entrepreneurship around the campus geared toward improving services for online students, said Craig D. Weidemann, the university’s vice provost for online education. That could help Penn State reach its 10-year goal of increasing enrollments in its online World Campus to 45,000 students.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/penn-state-starts-network-for-entrepreneurs-with-focus-on-online-learning/57321

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These 10 trends are shaping the future of education

September 3rd, 2015
by Roger Riddell, Education Dive
It’s an exciting time to be in education. The longstanding operating models for both higher ed and K-12 are both in a state of flux, and while demands for innovation probably won’t create an all-new landscape, the resulting product of ongoing changes is likely to be unrecognizable compared to that of the last several decades. And while some challenges and changes are exclusive to one sector, a few see some overlap between K-12 and postsecondary learning.  From alternative credentialing and changing demographics to testing concerns and the rise of STEM, here are 10 trends currently shaping the future of education.
http://www.educationdive.com/news/these-10-trends-are-shaping-the-future-of-education/404406/
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UMUC to eliminate textbooks

September 3rd, 2015

by Associated Press

The University of Maryland University College plans to eliminate textbooks this fall to save students money by using resources online. Kara Van Dam, a vice provost, said Thursday students will be able use a variety of materials like readings and videos online at no cost. Van Dam says the change will save students thousands of dollars over their academic program. She says other universities are taking similar steps, but UMUC is a front runner in making a transition of this magnitude.

http://www.wusa9.com/story/news/local/maryland/2015/08/27/maryland-university-eliminate-textbooks/32484205/

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OpenStax texts predicted to save students $25 million

September 3rd, 2015

by eCampus News

Rice University-based nonprofit OpenStax College has unveiled three new textbooks and said its growing catalog of free textbooks will save students an estimated $25 million in the 2015-16 academic year. OpenStax College uses philanthropic gifts from major foundations to produce open educational resources — full-color, peer-reviewed online textbooks that have the same look and feel as books that cost $100 or more. All OpenStax College textbooks are available free online and at low cost in print. The publisher, which launched with two titles in 2012, today offers 15 titles that have been used by more than 540,000 students and adopted by instructors in more than 2,000 courses worldwide. Its three newest titles — Algebra and Trigonometry, College Algebra and Chemistry — reflect OpenStax College’s commitment to publish titles for the most-attended college courses.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/open-texts-students-672/

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The Move from Course Management to Course Networking

September 2nd, 2015

By Mary Grush, Campus Technology

Over the past 18-plus years, LMS pioneer-developer Ali Jafari has applied his extensive research in learning technologies to the creation of learning management systems. Working at IU, he founded Oncourse — the first open source LMS and the basis and springboard for Sakai — and ANGEL Learning, which became a major competitor in the LMS marketplace and was ultimately acquired by Blackboard. His designs have taken their place among the world’s leading learning management systems. But in 2011, with his creation of CourseNetworking (theCN.com), Jafari’s work began to take a distinct turn, focusing more on social, global, and collaboration technologies. It’s what he has identified as the move from course management to course networking.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2015/08/18/the-move-from-course-management-to-course-networking.aspx

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Penn State World Campus launches program on California marine base

September 2nd, 2015

By Tara García Mathewson, Education Dive

Penn State’s World Campus will add a residential element with a new undergraduate labor and employment relations program at the San Diego Marine Corps Recruit Depot, which will offer its first class this semester. The Daily Collegian reports that the location will eventually offer graduate classes in homeland security, human resources and employment relations, and supply chain management. An admissions counselor and outreach coordinator have been hired to work in the area, recruiting military personnel as well as those in the region without any connection to the military.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/penn-state-world-campus-launches-program-on-california-marine-base/404699/

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Engineers Seek Flexible Benefits from Virtual Classroom

September 2nd, 2015

by Jenny Matthew, Marine Technology News

Looking at the global application of Online Distance Learning (ODL), according to a 2014 report from the International Council for Open and Distance Education, in 2007 there were 150 million students worldwide engaged in distance learning, with a predicted 400 million students by 2030. Truly highlighting the worth and potential of online learning. These predictions are certainly supported by Jee Ltd, a leading engineering and training firm, which recognizes that traditional tutor-led classroom methods of training can be costly, often difficult to deliver consistently to large, global teams and not always suited to demanding engineering schedules. As a result Jee has invested in developing cost-effective, flexible and accessible technical subsea modules for online delivery.

http://www.marinetechnologynews.com/news/engineers-flexible-benefits-virtual-519929

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Adapting courses for the digital era: the professors’ perspective

September 1st, 2015

By CAROLINE SIMON, the Daily Pennsylvanian

For the thousands of students from 195 countries who enroll in one of Penn’s online courses, the benefit of free, accessible education is obvious. But the professors who spend hours planning lessons, recording lectures and moderating online forums benefit from the surge in online learning as well. Fifty-seven faculty members at Penn currently offer courses through the massive open online course provider Coursera, a number that may rise as the University begins its recently announced partnership with edX, another MOOC provider. As of this year, online courses are offered by all of Penn’s 12 schools.

http://www.thedp.com/article/2015/08/moocs-from-professors-perspectives

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Can MOOCs Become Part of Best Practices in Online Learning?

September 1st, 2015

By Yoram Neumann, University Business

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have captured the headlines in higher education in the past year. These new platforms were developed to enable both open access and large scale participation in online courses. Many top tier universities are joining the MOOCs bandwagon, afraid of missing an important piece of the Web-based phenomenon. It is our goal as educators to assess whether or not they can become a best practice in online learning. There is still a long way to go for the current MOOCs to adopt the best practices and provide a quality of online learning experience resulting in maximized retention and lifelong sustainable learning in a coherent degree program. However, MOOCs can play an effective role of supplementary learning or continuing education without entering into degree granting arena. If this path is selected, MOOCs will have a valuable role to play but it will not become part of the core activities of institutions of higher learning.

http://www.universitybusiness.com/article/can-moocs-become-part-best-practices-online-learning

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E-Advisement: Technology-Supported Advising Services

September 1st, 2015

by Jimmy Solis, EDUCAUSE Review

Applying technology to the process of general academic advisement yields the more flexible, mobile approach called e-advisement, as explained in this case study. E-advisement integrates videoconferencing hardware (a webcam) and contemporary software with IM and uses online instructional tools in an advising capacity to improve student success. Further research should examine more student narratives in order to gain a better understanding of the student perspective and where they see themselves at the intersection of technology, academic advisement, and accessibility.

http://er.educause.edu/articles/2015/8/e-advisement-technology-supported-advising-services

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Admissions officers seeing more MOOC credentials on applications

August 31st, 2015

By Tara García Mathewson, Education Dive

Prospective students are touting massive open online course enrollment and completion on college applications, often in hopes of differentiating themselves from their competitors. The New York Times reports that college admissions officers are viewing these classes on applications as similar to extracurriculars that they don’t necessarily need to verify, because they are interesting but not a game changer for a student’s application. Some admissions officers say there’s little confidence in each MOOC’s content or quality based on a course title, leaving their impact on an applicant’s chances minimal for now.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/admissions-officers-seeing-more-mooc-credentials-on-applications/404621/

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USF course to pilot open-access e-textbook

August 31st, 2015

By Russell Nay, the Oracle

The day when students are no longer required to pay hundreds of dollars each semester for textbooks and course materials may finally be on the horizon. During his recent fall address to faculty, USF Provost Ralph Wilcox announced that the students enrolled in professor Jennifer Schneider’s Literature in Childhood Education course will use an open-access e-textbook to read digital literature collections, move through interactive lessons and visit children’s literature museums. “If we can find a way to reduce the cost of textbooks for students and engage them more fully in the learning process, students of this generation, I think, are going to be all the more successful,” Wilcox said in an interview. Schneider, an associate professor in the College of Education, said her online class’s e-textbook originally began as a proposal to the Textbook Affordability Project (TAP).

http://www.usforacle.com/news/view.php/1010271/USF-course-to-pilot-first-open-access-e-

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Online education for seniors done right

August 31st, 2015

by Jean Chatzky, Bankrate.com

Research shows that learning something new is one of the best ways to keep your mind healthy. No wonder people over 50 seem to naturally gravitate to the vast world of online learning for everything from pursuing a passion to retooling for a new career. One in 10 students who take online courses at Kaplan University, for instance, is over 50, says Sophie Vlessing, senior vice president at Kaplan Higher and Professional Education. Kevin Hawkins, 56, of Washington, D.C., recently graduated from Kaplan University with a bachelor’s degree in health and wellness after a 36-year career in broadcasting. Now Hawkins runs his own online health and wellness coaching business. “I knew I needed more education to shift careers, and I liked the flexibility of taking online courses,” Hawkins says.

http://www.bankrate.com/financing/senior-living/jean-chatzky-online-education-done-right/

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Gaining the Competitive Advantage without the Price Tag with an Online MBA

August 30th, 2015

by Ashley Wren Collins, Huffington Post

In CBS’s “What’s an Online MBA Worth?” Peter Shea, former head of the online education system for the State University of New York, said, “There is a growing body of evidence that suggest that the quality of online learning outcomes…is actually better than that of face-to-face instruction.” Be sure to vet your online MBA choices. You want to make sure that the on-line MBA faculty has a crossover with the residential faculty – if they outsource their faculty it is a sign the program is not as reputable and they don’t place the same value on their online education options. Some people like the branding that comes with a top business school and are willing to risk the debt in order to “wear” the school label and benefit from the networking opportunities. But there is more than one way to reach your goal, and an online MBA from a top accredited school with great faculty at a lower cost is an attractive option.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ashley-wren-collins/gaining-the-competitive-a_b_8022872.html

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