The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy: The Revolution in Higher Education by Charles Hugh Smith

My three greatest interests in higher education are (in order): affordability, student persistence, and technology-enabled education. Given the size of the sector, researchers or authors usually write about one of those topics in a focused or nuanced paper/book. Having read a reference to the above book that appeared to focus on affordability and technology-enabled education, I ordered a copy.

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The Midterm Elections

Based on historical trends, last week’s midterm election results should not have been a surprise to anyone. The party of the incumbent president has lost an average of 30 seats in the House and four in the Senate over the past 21 elections with only two elections where the president’s party has gained seats in both houses.

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Veterans Day

Veterans Day 2014

On Veterans Day, we celebrate and honor all who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces for their valor, patriotism and sacrifices. Like Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, it’s a holiday we share with other nations and I believe we should honor and respect Veterans Day in the same way.

While Veterans Day is celebrated only once a year, the pride and gratefulness we feel for all those who have served should remain foremost in our consciousness.

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Online Library

Moving from Idea to Innovation: Live Librarian Instruction in a First-Year Online Course

By: Dr. Angela M. Gibson, Professor, School of Arts and Humanities, American Public University System
Priscilla Coulter, Senior Online Librarian, American Public University System
Susan Sartory, Senior Online Librarian, American Public University System

At the recent 2014 Online Learning Consortium International Conference in Orlando, we had the honor of presenting,Bringing the Library to Life: Live Librarian Instruction in a First-Year Online Course.” The primary goals of our collaborative research were to increase student connection to the APUS Online Library, to enhance academic research skills, and foster student success in a first-year online course.

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Exploring Institution-to-Institution Student Swirling Patterns

On October 30, my colleagues Dr. Phil Ice, vice president of research and development, Dr. Melissa Layne, director of research methodology, and I presented a research paper at the Online Learning Consortium (formerly Sloan Consortium) annual conference in Orlando, FL. The research was conducted utilizing data submitted to the National Student Clearinghouse as well as the outcomes and analysis of the Clearinghouse data as compared to our data.

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The Adaptive Paradigm: To Adapt, or not to Adapt?

Dr. Phil Ice, VP of Research and Development at American Public University System

Adaptive learning is a current hot-button topic permeating higher education. In their quest to improve learning outcomes while increasing scalability, countless institutional administrators, program directors, and faculty are trying to determine which of the vast array of adaptive learning offerings may be the online learning equivalent of the Holy Grail.

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Liberal Arts

Defending the Liberal Arts

At a recent conference entitled “What is Liberal Education For?,” scholars gathered at St. John’s College in Santa Fe, New Mexico to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of its Santa Fe campus as well as to continue the debate about the merits of a wide, knowledge-encompassing degree versus something more practical and focused.

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Tracking Key Education Trends on a Late Summer Day

By Jeffrey McCafferty, Associate Vice President, Strategic Planning at the American Public University System

Late summer and early autumn is one of my favorite times to visit New York City. The weather is warm, people are bustling, and there is a sense of starting anew as summer vacations have concluded and all are back to work.

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Australia’s Universities Considering Tuition Discounting

An article in Inside Higher Ed discusses the efforts by the Australian government to deregulate tuition and fees by 2016 and the potential consequences for students if that occurs. Naturally, the discussion leads to tuition discounting as it exists in the United States. The writer references a July 2014 survey by the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) that finds that among 401 nonprofit colleges and universities, nearly 90 percent of the freshmen class were receiving grants equivalent to nearly a 50 percent discount on tuition.

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In a fairly new field such as Crowdsourcing (coined in 2005), having so many researchers presenting their papers enabled attendees to ask questions on topics similar to their area of research interest as well as share their findings on the same topic

Internet, Policy & Politics 2014: Crowdsourcing for Politics and Policy

Last week, I presented at The Internet, Policy & Politics Conference to debate whether or not MOOCs will satisfy learning effectiveness, satisfaction, and overall quality. I took note of the opening keynote speech by Dr. Chris Lintott, an astrophysicist and Citizen Science project lead in the Department of Physics at the University of Oxford. Dr. Lintott is the principal investigator of Zooniverse and is also the cofounder of Galaxy Zoo, an online crowdsourcing project where the public can volunteer to classify more than a million galaxies.

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