07 avril 2013

Prospective university students 'swayed by league tables'

The Guardian homeBy Richard Adams. Research by economists at University of London finds departments moving up league tables see rise in applications. Prospective students are increasingly influenced by university league tables when deciding where to study, according to research that found rises and falls within league standings provoking sharp changes in numbers of applications. The research by economists at Royal Holloway, University of London, found that individual departments moving up a subject-level league table experienced a rise in applications of almost 5%, with the increase most pronounced among overseas applicants. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:44 - - Permalien [#]


Hiding the Wrong (British) Accents

HomeBy Jack Grove for Times Higher Education. Many British academics are hiding their regional accents for fear of being mocked, patronized or sidelined by their departments, a study says. While discrimination on grounds of gender, race or sexuality were no longer acceptable in the workplace, researchers at Newcastle University claim a "tacit prejudice" against those with broad regional accents was still going unchallenged. As a result, many academics played down their local accents and "spoke posh" to avoid being classed as an “outsider” by their peers, the study says. With job losses, budget cuts and departmental restructuring, many staff felt having a regional accent could count against them in the event of redundancies, the paper adds. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:36 - - Permalien [#]

Intel on Adaptive Learning

HomeBy Paul Fain. Adaptive learning is hot. The technology, loosely defined as data-driven tools that can help professors mold coursework around individual students’ abilities, is developing at a dizzying pace. And colleges have been hard-pressed to keep up with the mishmash of adaptive offerings from emerging firms. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is trying to lend a hand. Foundation representatives believe adaptive learning has plenty of potential, both to help more students earn a college credential and to do so more efficiently. So the foundation footed the bill to bring together leaders from a group of a dozen relatively tech-savvy colleges and two associations to share information. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:35 - - Permalien [#]

Learning to Adapt

HomeBy Peter Stokes. “It’s not the strongest of the species that survives,” Charles Darwin once observed, “but the one most responsive to change.”
If only it were true in higher education. It’s interesting to observe, isn’t it, how much higher education is still driven by a “brute force” model of delivery? As much as we might wish it were otherwise, postsecondary courses and degree programs are still largely delivered in a one-size-fits-all manner, and those students who can’t keep up are simply left behind, sometimes irretrievably so – the higher education equivalent of natural selection, some might say. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:32 - - Permalien [#]

Thinking About the Public

HomeBy Paula M. Krebs. With so much focus on higher education's obligations to job preparation, the humanities are perpetually playing defense, especially in public higher education. We academic defenders of the humanities generally take one of two lines: we argue that 1) our majors ARE work force preparation -- we develop strong analytical skills, good writing, problem-solving, etc., or 2) we have no need to justify what we teach because the value of the humanities, the study of what makes us human, is self-evident. These arguments over the value of degrees in the humanities run parallel to a set of arguments I find myself making as part of a role I occupy, as a board member for my state council for the humanities. The National Endowment for the Humanities allocates about a third of its funding through the state councils, and the councils in turn fund humanities initiatives at the state level. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:30 - - Permalien [#]


Confusion on College Costs

HomeBy Libby A. Nelson. Most colleges will soon send out financial aid award letters for the upcoming academic year, informing admitted students (as well as those already enrolled) about how much they are expected to pay. In recent years, those letters have prompted a flurry of complaints that they are too confusing and sometimes misleading, and the Education Department, consumer advocates and some members of Congress have pushed for greater standardization. A study of proposed templates for financial aid letters released today suggests that students and parents want information that’s clear and easy to understand -- but they’re not particularly thrilled with any of the options available so far. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:27 - - Permalien [#]

Three's Company

HomeBy Ry Rivard. Stanford University, the epicenter of the modern massive open online course movement, said this week that it will develop online learning software with the only one of the three MOOC providers not founded by a Stanford faculty member. Instead, Stanford is teaming up with edX, the Cambridge, Mass.-based nonprofit founded by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University. Stanford and edX plan to work together to develop edX’s software platform, which will soon be freely available to developers across the world. (A key part of its software is already freely available.) In joining with edX’s development effort, Stanford has implicitly distanced itself from Coursera and Udacity, the two for-profit Silicon Valley companies started by Stanford faculty. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:25 - - Permalien [#]

Accreditors Without Borders

HomeBy Elizabeth Redden. American accrediting agencies are increasingly evaluating foreign colleges and programs that are unattached to U.S. institutions. Proponents of the exportation of U.S. accreditation argue that it has a role to play in improving the quality of universities and professional programs worldwide and in promoting the mobility of students and faculty; critics contend that, without care, the accreditors could find themselves in a compromising position.
They argue that the expansion of U.S. accreditation abroad is neocolonial on the one hand and hazardous on the other: can standards built on values underlying American higher education be upheld with integrity in other cultural contexts? Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:19 - - Permalien [#]

Data on whether and how students watch screencasts

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/icons/casting-out-nines.pngBy Robert Talbert. Screencasting is an integral part of the inverted classroom movement, and you can find screencasting even among courses that aren’t truly flipped. Using cheap, accessible tools for making and sharing video to clear out time for more student-active work during class make screencasting very appealing. But does it work? Do screencasts actually help students learn? We have lots of anecdotal evidence that suggests it does, but it turns out there are actually data as well that point in this direction. I’ve been reading an article by Katie Green, Tershia Pinder-Grover, and Joanna Mirecki Millunchick (of Michigan State University and the University of Michigan) from the October 2012 issue of the Journal of Engineering Education in which they studied 262 students enrolled in an engineering survey course that was augmented with screencasts. Here’s the PDF. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:10 - - Permalien [#]

The Itinerant Postdoc

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/icons/profhacker-nameplate.gifThis is a guest post by Adrianne Wadewitz, a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Digital Learning + Research at Occidental College. In previous posts in this series, I have discussed a day in the life of a digital humanities postdoc, digital scholarship at a liberal arts college, and the invisibility of digital work. In this last post, I would like to discuss the time management and life choices involved in a postdoc. One of the real joys of my position is that I have time to learn new skills, such as coding. I can take time out of every day to work on projects that flesh out my skills. For example, I can take real time to develop this website on the New England Primer that I have been working on only sporadically for the past few years or I can experiment with 18thconnect’s TypeWright project. However, I have to rein in my desire to start lots of new projects and focus on developing my dissertation project into a book. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 01:07 - - Permalien [#]