25 août 2013

American Gulf University’s Presence in the UAE

http://www.hastac.org/files/imagecache/Small/hastac-icon.jpgBy Michelle Kwan. American Gulf University is a reputable online university that has branches all over the world and especially in the UAE. The University is renowned for imparting country-specific education to students in keeping with the market conditions of the region. Accordingly, American Gulf University hires and allocates teachers so that the students are more receptive to learning and there are no language barriers or similar problems.
American Gulf University's presence in the UAE means that students studying in that region are exposed to the highest levels of excellence in education and innovation. The prospering economy of the UAE provides the perfect base for cultivation of natural talent and a promise of extraordinary achievement. American Gulf University offers 71 majors in its 16 schools of education. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:59 - - Permalien [#]
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Why Does College Cost So Much--And Why Do So Many Pundits Get It Wrong?

http://www.hastac.org/files/imagecache/Small/hastac-icon.jpgBy Cathy Davidson. To say that American universities are too expensive is like saying cars are too expensive. What do we mean by such a statement?  Are we talking about the cost of a Lamborghini Veneno (at 3.5M, one of the world's  most expensive cars) or a Hyundai Atos (at $9000, one of the least expensive)?  For the captain of industry, the sultan, or the magnate, there might not be enough luxury features on the Lamborghini.  For the person barely hanging on to that minimum wage job with no benefits, paying $9000 for an Atos to get across town to work at Walmart every day may be hopelessly out of reach.
So is the Hyundai too expensive?  Is the Lamborghini too cheap?
That is the kind of question we need to be asking of U.S. higher education, an ad hoc system that varies tremendously by state and by kind.  Unlike many countries, we do not have a publiic, national university system. The range of tuition costs (elite private university? public community college? for-profit institution? online provider?) is as diverse as the students being served. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:57 - - Permalien [#]
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Elephant in the Room on Proposed White House College Ratings: Data

http://higheredwatch.newamerica.net/sites/all/themes/nafbase/images/logo.pngBy Clare McCann. President Obama’s new higher education proposal, just announced in a speech at SUNY-Buffalo this morning, would require the Department of Education to develop college ratings that highlight schools’ value by the 2014-15 school year. Once the ratings are developed, the plan is to then tie federal dollars to performance. Though students could continue to choose whichever college they want, federal dollars, at least, would be funneled toward the highest-value programs (and presumably, funneled away from the lowest-value programs). A ratings system along the proposed dimensions of access, affordability, and outcomes would provide students and families much deeper and better information about the quality and cost of their prospective colleges than they have now. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:47 - - Permalien [#]

A Rapid Analysis of New Ed Department Data

http://higheredwatch.newamerica.net/sites/all/themes/nafbase/images/logo.pngBy Clare McCann and Ben Miller. Today, the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics released its quadrennial survey of student financial aid. We are publishing our own rapid analysis of the new data, highlighting trends in borrowing and grant aid across different incomes, institutions, and other variables.
1. High Borrowing Rates among Pell Grant Students
These latest data from the Department of Education show that students receiving Pell Grants last year still had to employ student loans to pay for their college educations. In particular, more and more students at community colleges and private nonprofit universities had to borrow to pay for school. Students at for-profit colleges who receive Pell Grants still borrowed at the highest rate of any institution type, however, at 87.5 percent. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:43 - - Permalien [#]

A Path Forward For Higher Ed Innovations Such as Prior Learning Assessment

http://higheredwatch.newamerica.net/sites/all/themes/nafbase/images/logo.pngBy Lindsey Tepe. Today, as the President announced his new plan to make college more affordable, one of the three broad goals in his ambitious agenda focused on promoting innovation and competition in higher education. Plans like these are typically light on the details, asking for more investment – see the President’s Pre-K plan – and calling for legislative changes that are unrealistic in today’s political climate. Fortunately, this part of the plan seeks to capitalize on an existing policy tool that can help spur innovation by removing regulatory barriers: the Experimental Sites Initiative. For those who haven’t read through Title IV lately in the Higher Education Act, you may be scratching your heads and wondering what exactly experimental sites are. Well, in the 1992 Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, Congress gave the Department of Education a powerful tool to test and refine innovative ideas in higher education. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:40 - - Permalien [#]

President Obama Aims to "Shake Things Up" in Higher Ed

http://higheredwatch.newamerica.net/sites/all/themes/nafbase/images/logo.pngBy Rachel Fishman and Amy Laitinen. When President Obama said he was going to “shake things up” in higher education just under a month ago, many of us didn’t really believe it, fatigued from lofty presidential promises that failed to go anywhere due to Congressional gridlock and the effective workings of the higher education lobby. Well, we were wrong. This week he revealed his bold new vision for higher education that will focus on three key areas: paying for performance, promoting innovation and competition, and ensuring that student debt remains affordable. The first priority—paying for performance—could be the most ambitious reform to higher education funding since the creation of federal financial aid. Speaking to a large crowd of mostly college students at SUNY Buffalo, Obama explained, “Our first priority is aimed at providing better value for students -- making sure that families and taxpayers are getting what we pay for. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:38 - - Permalien [#]

Obama Proposes New System for Rating Colleges

http://www.diversepodium.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/newheaderd.jpgBy Julie Pace. Calling higher education an “economic imperative,” President Barack Obama is pushing for an ambitious new government rating system for colleges that would judge schools on affordability and performance and ultimately determine how federal financial aid is distributed.
The rating system, which the president wants implemented before the 2015 school year, would evaluate colleges on several criteria, including average tuition and student loan debt, graduation rates, and the average earning of graduates. Obama says he will ask Congress to link the new rating system to the way federal financial aid is disbursed, with students attending highly-rated schools receiving larger grants and more affordable student loans. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:15 - - Permalien [#]

Confessions of a MOOC Reviewer

http://wcetblog.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/allan_elizabeth.jpg?w=200&h=300By Elizabeth Allan. As an American Council on Education (ACE) CREDIT reviewer, I had the unique privilege of being on the team that reviewed the first MOOCS (Massive Open Online Course).  The experience was unique due to the course delivery.  In the end, the process was the same used in every other review for ACE.
I’m often asked about the process and how the review was done.  Most of the time the person asking is really wanting to know how a faculty member can be confident in the recommendation.  The answer, I believe, is in the process.  The faculty review team was led by a national coordinator with extensive experience in teaching and evaluation and consisted of faculty current in the academic discipline under review.  We all had extensive experience in reviewing online courses and in essence, this was a review of an online course – with obvious differences. More on that later.What Happens In A Review?
For all ACE reviews, we consider student learning outcomes, the intensity of the course, pre- and post-course assignments, qualifications of faculty, and academic and work-related experience of the participants.  Reviewers work together to review the Content, Scope, and Rigor of the course including: course syllabi, textbooks, assessment methods, student and instructor guides, student projects, instructional materials, and instructor qualifications to name just a few. One thing we keep central in our focus is that we have the charge to consider recommendations based not on our institution, locale, or region but to critically appraise materials from a national/professional perspective.  It’s not our job to review a program based on what we do at our local campus, but instead to review each course in light of the ACE guidelines and best practices.  It is not an easy thing to do, but that’s where having a team and coordinator is vital.
How Did MOOCs Differ From Other Courses?
So what was different about the MOOC? Not that much. The course was reviewed using the ACE review criteria, no special considerations were given – the courses had to meet the requirements for Content, Scope, and Rigor.  A credit recommendation was given because the team determined that the course met the requirements. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:09 - - Permalien [#]

Corporate Connectivism

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-Ol3yzB0rSNU/AAAAAAAAAAI/AAAAAAAAA7g/_-PvkRPa5cU/s46-c-k-no/photo.jpgBy Stefan P. Schmid. The recent rise of MOOCs has created a buzz in the world of corporate education. Theories and experiments on how to leverage the systematic within corporate settings, have sprouted all sorts of interesting constructions including "Corporate MOOCs" that function as a sort of pre-selection for recruiters. Others interpret this term into company-wide courses, that utilize MOOC technology and design principles.
The underlying thought here, is that MOOCs - as they are percieved from the outside - do something 'magical'. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 23:06 - - Permalien [#]

The MOOC Is Dead! Long Live Open Learning!

http://diyubook.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/DIYURevised-280p.jpgWe’re at a curious point in the hype cycle of educational innovation, where the hottest concept of the past year–Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs–is simultaneously being discovered by the mainstream media, even as the education-focused press is declaring them dead. “More Proof MOOCs are Hot,” and “MOOCs Embraced By Top Universities,” said the Wall Street Journal and USA Today last week upon the announcement that Coursera had received a $43 million round of funding to expand its offerings;
“Beyond MOOC Hype” was the nearly simultaneous headline in Inside Higher Ed.
Can MOOCs really be growing and dying at the same time?
The best way to resolve these contradictory signals is probably to accept that the MOOC, itself still an evolving innovation, is little more than a rhetorical catchall for a set of anxieties around teaching, learning, funding and connecting higher education to the digital world. This is a moment of cultural transition. Access to higher education is strained. The prices just keep rising. Questions about relevance are growing. The idea of millions of students from around the world learning from the worlds’ most famous professors at very small marginal cost, using the latest in artificial intelligence and high-bandwidth communications, is a captivating one that has drawn tens of millions in venture capital. Yet, partnerships between MOOC platforms and public institutions like SUNY and the University of California to create self-paced blended courses and multiple paths to degrees look like a sensible next step for the MOOC, but they are far from that revolutionary future. Separate ideas like blended learning and plain old online delivery seem to be blurring with and overtaking the MOOC–even Blackboard is using the term.
The time seems to be ripe for a reconsideration of the “Massive” impact of “Online” and “Open” learning. The Reclaim Open Learning initiative is a growing community of teachers, researchers and learners in higher education dedicated to this reconsideration. Supporters include the MIT Media Lab and the MacArthur Foundation-supported Digital Media and Learning Research Hub. I am honored to be associated with the project as a documentarian and beater of the drum.
Entries are currently open for our Innovation Contest, offering a $2000 incentive to either teachers or students who have projects to transform higher education in a direction that is connected and creative, is open as in open content and open as in open access, that is participatory, that takes advantage of some of the forms and practices that the MOOC also does but is not beholden to the narrow mainstream MOOC format (referring instead to some of the earlier iterations of student-created, distributed MOOCscreated by Dave Cormier, George Siemens, Stephen Downes and others.)
Current entries include a platform to facilitate peer to peer language learning, a Skype-based open-access seminar with guests from around the world, and a student-created course in educational technology. Go here to add your entry! Deadline is August 2. Our judges include Cathy Davidson (HASTAC), Joi Ito (MIT), and Paul Kim (Stanford).
Reclaim Open Learning earlier sponsored a hackathon at the MIT Media Lab. This fall, September 27 and 28, our judges and contest winners will join us at a series of conversations and demo days to Reclaim Open Learning at the University of California, Irvine. If you’re interested in continuing the conversation, join us there or check us out online.

Posté par pcassuto à 22:22 - - Permalien [#]
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