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Category: Higher Ed Models

Hey Buddy — You Got a Dime to Spend on Learning? ?>

Hey Buddy — You Got a Dime to Spend on Learning?

So, it turns out MOOCs, after all the hype, are not the invention that would turn higher education upside down. If anything, MOOCs were the gateway drug that got investors in a lather to throw money at higher education. Now that Coursera, Udacity and EdX — the big MOOC companies — are having a hard time establishing a  business model, some investors are heading back to the sidelines, waiting for the next big disruptor of higher education. The ed tech…

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A Summer Full of Optimistic Ideas for Higher Ed ?>

A Summer Full of Optimistic Ideas for Higher Ed

Sometimes I feel like we are the voice of gloom and doom in higher education. We don’t mean to be. Colleges and universities will survive — they are the gateway to a better, more productive life for almost everyone. But they will evolve — the present business model is broken. So where are the  new ideas to make colleges better? Attending a number of recent higher education conferences, I heard a lot of optimistic approaches to higher education — or…

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Universities are Department Stores — Is That a Good Thing? ?>

Universities are Department Stores — Is That a Good Thing?

There was a day when the department store was the center of American consumer commerce and its social life. The department store sat atop the retail evolutionary chain — every region had its own: Boston had Filene’s and Jordan Marsh, Philadelphia had Wanamaker’s, Washington had Hecht’s and Woodie’s, Phoenix had Goldwater’s, St. Louis had Famous Barr, and on and on. Even small towns revolved around the department store — think of Higbeee’s, the store at the center of A Christmas…

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The Slippery Slope of Private College Finances ?>

The Slippery Slope of Private College Finances

There are few yardsticks for measuring the financial health of colleges and universities in America, particularly private ones. Every college uses its own sets of figures, or interprets questions in different ways. The resulting data is often years out of date. Analysis by bond-ratings agencies cover only a small subset of colleges, and usually the largest ones. So when the Department of Education recently released its scores for financial responsibility of private colleges, I took notice. The data is not…

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An Optimistic View (or Not) of The Future of Higher Education ?>

An Optimistic View (or Not) of The Future of Higher Education

This past weekend I had the pleasure of listening to Daphne Koller, the co-founder of Coursera, and Ben Nelson, the CEO of the Minerva Project, speak on a panel. It was the best panel I have ever heard. Evidently it is a common occurrence for these two to be on a panel talking about the future of higher education – they are after all two of the leaders in the now infamous Ed Tech “disruption” movement. More than their knowledge…

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Can’t We Replace Professors Faster? ?>

Can’t We Replace Professors Faster?

Chief academic officers see a clear need for more interdisciplinary instruction at colleges and teaching that seamlessly incorporates technology, onsite and online learning. But, as we asked in an earlier blog post, is the faculty ready and able to do this? No — most provosts who responded to a recent poll said flatly. “Graduate preparation lags woefully behind the needs of the industry,” wrote a chief academic officer of a private university of more than 4,000 students, responding to a…

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The Mismatch between Academic Training and Student Need: A College of 2020 Poll ?>

The Mismatch between Academic Training and Student Need: A College of 2020 Poll

Administrators are looking for different qualities and experiences in new faculty members. But the results of a recent survey show how painfully slow change can be in higher education. For example, at a time when outsiders might expect colleges to be looking for a more flexible workforce, colleges are doing the opposite. While 37 percent of chief academic officers now say that at least 60 percent of their faculty is tenured, 46 percent say at least 60 percent of their…

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The Rise of the Machine — The Future of Higher Ed? ?>

The Rise of the Machine — The Future of Higher Ed?

We spend a lot of time imagining what the college of the future will look like and how it will respond to the needs of students. Two recent pieces helped fill in some aspects of the higher education picture I had not yet contemplated. Both are well worth your time. And a third article is vital reading for those in the middle of this meltdown: the faculty. “The future looks like this: Access to college-level education will be free for…

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A Vision of The College of 2020 ?>

A Vision of The College of 2020

At the College of 2020 we spend a lot time blogging about what the future of higher education will look like – now I want to try to help you envision one potential view of the it. This is 2020 – while only 8 years from now, I believe the higher education landscape will look drastically different – primarily because of online content and mobile devices. I believe that a majority of higher education students will take at least 80%…

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What Can Higher Ed Learn from Healthcare Reform? ?>

What Can Higher Ed Learn from Healthcare Reform?

I am thinking of an industry that performs a vital public service with unlimited demand. But it is marked by cost increases that far outstrip inflation, extreme specialization, and a lack of coordination. Sounds familiar, right? But I am thinking of healthcare, not higher education. In many respects, reform of healthcare and higher education are proceeding on parallel tracks. Both are immense industries, with core products that are essential to well-being, heavily subsidized by the public, and entrapped by outdated…

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