January 23, 2013

January 16, 2013

Today’s commentary at the John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy leads off with my article about where accreditation is heading.

Accreditation is an idea that makes sense if you think of universities as factories:

Accreditors were supposed to be the quality control department of the factory.

December 12, 2012

Time for the 2013 Edition of ACTA’s What Will They Learn?™ report.

In last year’s edition, ACTA followed the curricula at over 1,000 undergraduate institutions to see whether there was any correlation between desired learning outcomes in liberal arts programs and topics actually covered in the classroom.

November 28, 2012

As I was writing Abelard to Apple, I became increasingly skeptical that accreditors could  get it together.  I suppose there is an argument to be made that the federal and state governments need a rudimentary ability to separate clearly reputable educational institutions from store-front operations. That was the original motivation for the current system of accreditation, but the accreditation industry wants so so much more.

November 20, 2012

MOOC platforms are the new startups. Nobody really knows how it will all turn out, but these are experiments that need to be given time, space, and dollars to to incubate innovation. But what exactly does that mean?

November 03, 2012

MOOC platforms are the new startups. Nobody really knows how it will all turn out, but these are experiments that need to be given time, space, and dollars to to incubate innovation. But what exactly does that mean?

November 01, 2012

This blog post is a repost inspired by the explosion of new innovation models for MOOCs and how universities should organize to create safe spaces for experimentation. My suggestion is to look closely at the lessons from the commercial sector (see previous post).

October 25, 2012

Millions of students from all over the globe are flocking to Coursera, Udacity, and edX to take free, online courses. With these courses offering nothing more than certificates of completion, why are so many people eager to register as students? And what could the success of non-accredited programs tell us about what the 21st century student really wants?

October 16, 2012

MOOC platforms are the new startups. Literally. We are closing in on a half billion dollars pouring into online education companies like Coursera, Udacity, and edX. Tens of millions of dollars are flying out the door of places like MIT, Stanford and Georgia Tech to produce new instructional materials. Nobody really knows how it will all turn out, but the most often repeated mantra is that these are experiments that need to be given time, space, and dollars to to incubate innovation. But what exactly does that mean?

October 12, 2012

OK, so it’s one thing to know what forces are driving tuition increases.  It’s another thing to know where money is being spent.   That is a problem of different proportions because universities do not report their spending in neat categories like

October 01, 2012

Critics seem hell-bent to fabricate exotic reasons that college tuition is rising. “It is a market response to free-flowing federal dollars,” say some. “It is a conspiracy,” say others. “Declining productivity!” say those who are convinced that college professors are overpaid and underworked.

September 22, 2012

“How the Flipped Classroom Is Radically Transforming Learning,” a blog post by educators Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams reflects on their use of the flipped classroom model. They discuss the benefits of using the model and explain why they could never return to the traditional method of teaching.

August 21, 2012

According to a recent New York Times article by Steve Lohr, “Study Finds That Online Education Beats the Classroom,” an analysis conducted for the U.S. Department of Education found that on average, students completing some or all of a course online rank in the 59th percentile in tested performance, compared with students completing a course in a traditional classroom who score in the 50th percentile.

August 13, 2012

“Four-year residential colleges cannot keep on forever raising their fees faster than the public’s capacity to pay them, especially when online degrees are so much cheaper. Universities that fail to prepare for the hurricane ahead are likely to be flattened by it.” This sort of bleak forecast, made by The Economist in response to a recent report prepared by Bain & Company, is becoming commonplace in higher education.

July 31, 2012

“It’s a tradition going back thousands of years,” writes American RadioWorks’ Emily Hanford in “Don’t Lecture Me: Rethinking the Way College Students Are Taught.” That said, “[University of Maryland Professor Joe] Redish is trying to change the way college students are taught.