Deconstructing Education

Higher Ed: For Students, the Sum of the Parts May Be Greater than the Whole

It’s common knowledge among those of us researching student retention in online higher education that swirling (attendance by a student at multiple institutions) is much more prevalent with online, than on-ground, programs.  Some of the explanations offered include that it’s easier to switch from one online program to another and there’s less social integration among online students so less social stigma in leaving. Others posit that online students are much more savvy about reviewing courses at multiple institutions to enable them to build a richer collection of courses. Lastly, some note that the more frequent semester starts offered by online institutions makes it more conducive for students switching schools to accommodate their personal and work schedules, and to finish their program sooner. 

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It’s Time For All Of Us To End Fake News (Or Fake Truth)

As part of the 2016 presidential election and the post-election analysis, the topic of “fake news” was discussed almost as much as the email hacking of the Democratic National Committee.  With both sides pointing fingers, conservatives at progressives and vice-versa, it’s clear that both sides were successful in distributing “news” that their followers could post on Facebook or Twitter and opt for broader distribution of the “truth” vis-à-vis their political perspective.

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CCSF

Higher Ed Insights: Week of Dec. 12, 2016

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges’ (CCJC) president, Barbara Beno, was placed on administrative leave for six months up to her scheduled retirement.  The leave begins 30 days before the Commission is scheduled to make its final decision on  accrediting the City College of San Francisco (CCSF).  Her removal also precedes the U.S. Department of Education’s (ED) decision whether to revoke CCJC’s ability to accredit two-year colleges, scheduled to follow CCJC’s meeting to determine the fate of CCSF.

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A book by Bowen

Higher Ed Insights: Week of Oct. 24, 2016

Last week marked the passing of Dr. William G. Bowen, former provost and president at Princeton University, president of the Mellon Foundation, and author of several noteworthy books on higher education. During his tenure at the Mellon Foundation, he created an internal research division, the non-profit reference sources JSTOR and ARTstor, and the iThaka research foundation dedicated to examining the interface between technology and education.

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IPP Conference

Internet, Politics, Policy Conference 2016: The Platform Society

The fourth conference organized by the Policy and Internet Journal (PIJ, founded in 2009) and the Oxford Internet Institute (OII) was held at the Mathematics Institute at Oxford University in late September. I was pleased to attend and represent American Public University System. The following recaps some of the presentations.

“We move from one online platform to another as part of our daily lives,” said Professor Helen Margetts, OII chair.

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Business of Higher Ed

Higher Ed Insights: Week of October 17, 2016

Reuters wrote about how a Chinese company, Dipont, bought access to admissions officers at elite U.S. colleges and universities including Vanderbilt, Tulane, the University of Virginia, and Wellesley College. Eight former Dipont employees were interviewed about the company’s practices with U.S. admissions officers. One of those practices, hosting a summer program in China and inviting U.S.

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President's Forum

Measuring Progress: Catching Up With Innovation – the 13th Annual Presidents’ Forum

The Presidents’ Forum, established in 2004, is a collaboration of accredited, national, adult-serving institutions and programs that have embraced the power and potential of online education. The Forum provides a venue for leaders in higher education and stakeholders to share their knowledge and learn from others’ best practices. It was originally affiliated with Excelsior College and Excelsior’s president, John Ebersole, deserves credit for organizing and supporting it in its early years (note: I currently serve as Forum vice chair and APUS has supported the Forum for years).

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Photos and Videos in the Digital Age

Wally Boston glances back to when he acquired his first camera and later down the line, his first digital camera. As technology in this area evolves and becomes more sophisticated, so do consumers' needs for devices that can keep pace. Boston says that while he can only speculate on the power of government-operated facial recognition software, the power distributed to the person on the street through their phones and online software platforms is notable.

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