25 août 2013

Sabato’s Kennedy MOOC Has a Companion Book and a TV Special

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/wiredcampus-45.pngBy Lawrence Biemiller. If there’s going to be a MOOC equivalent to a Hollywood blockbuster, it may well be Larry J. Sabato’s course this fall called “The Kennedy Half Century”—a course that will have as media companions an hourlong PBS documentary starring Mr. Sabato and his latest book, The Kennedy Half Century: The Presidency, Assassination, and Lasting Legacy of John F. Kennedy.
Mr. Sabato, the University of Virginia politics professor who is a frequent guest on news broadcasts, is recording about eight hours of video for the monthlong course, which will begin with John F. Kennedy’s early legislative career and then cover both his presidency and his influence on the decades since his assassination 50 years ago this November. The course, which starts on October 21, will be broken into 40 lessons, each 10 to 20 minutes long and each incorporating a quiz. A final examination is “not optional,” according to the course Web site, which is now accepting registrations. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 21:00 - - Permalien [#]

Obama Proposals for Colleges Highlight Online Courses

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/wiredcampus-45.pngBy Megan O'Neil. Developing online classes and other nontraditional teaching approaches could earn colleges money under new federal financing priorities proposed on Thursday by President Obama. More colleges should be encouraged “to embrace innovative new ways to prepare our students for a 21st-century economy and maintain a high level of quality without breaking the bank,” the president said in a speech at the University at Buffalo, part of the State University of New York. The financial rewards for such innovation would be part of a larger retooling of financing priorities, Mr. Obama said. Under his proposal, the Department of Education would have two years to create a college-rating system to help students and their parents determine the value of an institution. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:55 - - Permalien [#]

White House Outlines Proposed Ratings System to Lower College Costs

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/Ticker%20revised%20round%2045.gifThe White House on Thursday morning released details of President Obama’s plan to make college more affordable, with a proposal that seeks to measure colleges’ performance through a new ratings system. Following are highlights of a White House fact sheet on Mr. Obama’s plan, released in advance of his speech at the University at Buffalo that will address college affordability:
• Before the 2015 academic year, the U.S. Department of Education will “develop a new ratings system to help students compare the value offered by colleges and encourage colleges to improve. These ratings will compare colleges with similar missions and identify colleges that do the most to help students from disadvantaged backgrounds as well as colleges that are improving their performance.” The ratings will be based on factors including access, such as the percentage of students receiving Pell Grants; affordability, such as average tuition rates; and outcomes, such as graduation rates and graduates’ earnings.
• The results, the White House said, will be published on the department’s College Scorecard, which itself was met with mixed reviews from many in higher education.
• The plan seeks eventually to tie financial aid to the results of the new rating system: “In the upcoming reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, the president will seek legislation allocating financial aid based on these college ratings by 2018, once the ratings system is well established. Students can continue to choose whichever college they want, but taxpayer dollars will be steered toward high-performing colleges that provide the best value.”
• According to the White House fact sheet, Mr. Obama will seek to reward colleges with a bonus for the number of Pell Grant recipients they graduate, and to require colleges with high dropout rates to disburse Pell Grants over the course of the semester, rather than in lump sums at the beginning of the semester.
The White House’s fact sheet also said that Mr. Obama would challenge colleges to embrace certain higher-education innovations as a way to drive down costs, including competency-based programs, massive open online courses, popularly known as MOOCs, and “flipped” classrooms.
Read the whole thing here, and follow along as The Chronicle gathers reactions to the president’s proposals from higher education throughout the day.

Posté par pcassuto à 20:53 - - Permalien [#]

As Brain Research Expands, It May Not Need Major Ethical Overhaul

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/percolator-45.pngBy Paul Basken. Not long after he proposed giving researchers $100-million to improve fundamental understandings of brain function, President Obama was worried. How, Mr. Obama asked his bioethics commission last month, might improved technologies for reading the brain affect society in areas that include personal privacy, moral and legal accountability, stigmatization, discrimination, and measures of intelligence?
On Tuesday the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues began tackling that question. And, at least on its first pass at the subject, it largely counseled calm. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:51 - - Permalien [#]

A Quarter of High-School Grads Who Took ACT Are Found College-Ready

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/headcount-45.pngBy Beckie Supiano. Twenty-six percent of high-school graduates who took the ACT in 2013 met all four of its college-readiness benchmarks, according to a report released on Wednesday by ACT Inc., the organization that administers the test. The benchmarks were designed by ACT to indicate the minimum scores needed on each subject it tests to signify a 50-percent chance of earning a B or higher, or a 75-percent chance of earning a C or higher, in corresponding first-year college courses. The report, “The Condition of College & Career Readiness 2013,” considers the scores of the 54 percent of 2013 high-school graduates—about 1.8 million people—who took the ACT. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:49 - - Permalien [#]

Obama Plan to Tie Student Aid to College Ratings Draws Mixed Reviews

http://chronicle.com/img/subscribe-footer.pngBy Kelly Field. President Obama continues his three-campus "college cost" bus tour on Friday, promoting his plans to make college more affordable through a mix of carrots and sticks. The heart of the proposals is a controversial plan to rate colleges based on measures of access, affordability, and student outcomes, and to allocate aid based on those ratings. Under the plan, students attending higher-rated institutions could obtain larger Pell Grants and more-affordable loans. The Obama administration and its supporters say the ratings would empower consumers with fresh information and would pressure colleges to keep costs down. They describe a "datapalooza," in which prospective students would be able to compare institutions on measures such as debt levels, graduation and transfer rates, and graduates' earnings. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:38 - - Permalien [#]

Obama Singles Out For-Profit Colleges and Law Schools for Criticism

http://chronicle.com/img/subscribe-footer.pngBy Goldie Blumenstyk. President Obama took a swipe at law schools and for-profit colleges on Friday, the second day of his college bus tour, suggesting that legal education could be just as effective if it took two years rather than three, and assailing proprietary colleges that leave students in debt and ill prepared for a job.
At some for-profit colleges, students are "loaded down with enormous debt," said Mr. Obama, speaking at a Binghamton University town-hall event. "They can't find a job. They default. The taxpayer ends up holding the bag. Their credit is ruined, and the for-profit institution is making out like a bandit. That's a problem." More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:37 - - Permalien [#]

4 Key Ideas in Obama's Plan to Control College Costs Bear Familiar Fingerprints

http://chronicle.com/img/subscribe-footer.pngBy Dan Berrett, Goldie Blumenstyk, Sara Lipka, Marc Parry, and Beckie Supiano. Many of the ideas embraced by President Obama in his call to control college costs have longstanding champions in major foundations and among prominent policy analysts. The president's plan dovetails closely with the agendas of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which has spent $472-million to remake college education in the United States, and of the Lumina Foundation, the largest private foundation devoted solely to higher education. Many features of the president's plan have been advocated, too, in the research and analysis of the New America Foundation's education-policy program. The Gates Foundation and its major grantees have focused, for example, on the idea of tying aid for colleges to their performance, a cornerstone of the president's plan. At the state level, Gates grantees like Complete College America and Jobs for the Future have been pushing efforts to tie colleges' budgets to factors like graduation rates. And at the federal level, the foundation's Reimagining Aid Design and Delivery project has supported research on using financial aid as a lever to improve student success. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:35 - - Permalien [#]

The Comforts of the Apocalypse

http://chronicle.com/img/subscribe-footer.pngBy Rob Goodman. Nineteen days after the world failed to end, blood stopped flowing to the brain of Harold Camping, prophet of doom. Had he felt his stroke coming as he confidently forecast apocalypse? Maybe not; maybe he had no more foresight into his own demise than the demise of the world. Or maybe he had simply confused the two—after all, he was approaching his 90th birthday, and his own mortality couldn't have seemed far off when, on national billboards and his own radio network, he set a date (May 21, 2011) for the end of days. For some, it is a short mental step from "my end is imminent" to "the end of everything is imminent." Call it apocalyptic narcissism.
We flatter ourselves when we imagine a world incapable of lasting without us in it—a world that, having ceased to exist, cannot forget us, discard us, or pave over our graves. Even if the earth no longer sits at the center of creation, we can persuade ourselves that our life spans sit at the center of time, that our age and no other is history's fulcrum. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 20:32 - - Permalien [#]

Karriereberater an Unis: Wie komme ich im Elfenbeinturm nach oben?

http://www.spiegel.de/static/sys/v10/logo/spiegel_online_logo_460_64.pngVon Christine Xuân Müller. Professoren brauchen keine Beratung, hieß es lange. Das Hochschulmagazin "duz" zeigt, dass auch etablierte Forscher lernen müssen, in Uni-Hierarchien voran zu kommen. Doktoranden hilft der Coach auch bei der Frage: Abbrechen oder weitermachen?
Wer Raum 2.06 der Hochschule für Wirtschaft und Recht Berlin (HWR) betritt, taucht ein in eine untypische Büroatmosphäre. Das kleine Zimmer versprüht Wohnzimmercharme: Duft von frisch gebrühtem Ingwer-Orange-Kräutertee liegt in der Luft, warme, freundliche Beleuchtung, Naturfotos an den Wänden und dezente klassische Musik. Kreisförmig angeordnete Stühle mit weichen Kissen laden zum Verweilen ein. Mehr...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:21 - - Permalien [#]
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