Probe finds fraud in U.S. distance education

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) identified a “serious vulnerability” in distance education programs due to frauds committed by students and recommended a stricter enrollment process for colleges, Reuters reports. Stocks of for-profit colleges, which mostly offer online programs, fell on fears of further decline in enrollment and profit…

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Over 20 Mass. college executives make over $1 million

Top-level college executives are enjoying rising pay packages, often exceeding $1 million annually, even as students are facing ever-higher tuition rates and universities are being forced to cut programs and low-level staff, according to a new report, says the Huffington Post. Researchers with the Boston-based public-interest group Tellus Institute reviewed the most recent tax filings of the 20 most well-endowed private Massachusetts colleges and universities, including Harvard, MIT, Boston University, Boston College and Northeastern University. The study found the schools, which have a combined endowment surpassing $50 billion, had gaping pay disparities between high-level officials and rank-and-file employees…

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10 colleges that lead to graduate school

For some college students, pursuing an advanced degree after graduation is inevitable. (Premed students, for instance, know they’ll need to go to medical school to become doctors.) Others may immediately pursue a graduate education, at a law school, perhaps, to follow a lifelong passion, says U.S. News. Still other students may look to graduate school as a safe haven from a stagnant job market. Whatever the reason, many students enroll in graduate school shortly after completing their college degree…

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Cornell discovers that Twitter is the world’s mood ring

If you start the day feeling positive but feel yourself growing increasingly glum as it slugs along, you’re not alone. A new study using Twitter to track daily, global mood swings found that people tend to have two peaks, happiness-wise: early in the morning and then again around midnight, reports the Huffington Post. Sociologists at Cornell University tracked more than half a billion tweets from more than 2 million Twitter users across the globe over two years. Relying on language-monitoring software, they found that people tend to be happiest relatively early in the morning, but that good mood deteriorates as the day continues…

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Mo. college loan agency to process federal loans

Starting in October, thousands of people repaying their federal student loans will begin sending their checks to the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority, Bloomberg Businessweek reports. The Missouri agency says it is the first state-based nonprofit organization to be approved to handle federal loan payments since a 2010 law required the U.S. Department of Education to originate all federally backed student loans…

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Seton Hill scales the ed-tech integration summit

Colleges have followed Seton Hill's lead in iPad adoption.

Realizing that students today “interact with the world in radically different ways than previous generations,” Seton Hill University in Greensburg, Pa., was one of the first schools in the country to give its students iPads after Apple introduced its iconic tablet computer last year.

But it was Seton Hill’s vision for transforming education through the use of technology, and its focus on staff development to achieve this goal, that led to its selection as our “eCampus of the Month” for October.

Here, Vice President for Information Technology Phil Komarny describes the university’s ed-tech vision and its keys to success.

How does your campus use technology to advance student learning?

We have been committed to using technology to advance student learning since receiving our first Title III Strengthening Institutions grant.

We continue to promote technology integration into classroom instruction through our second Title III grant’s ELITE professional development program for faculty and our Griffin Technology Advantage program for students.

Both programs embrace technology, recognizing that today’s students interact with the world in radically different ways than previous generations.

The ELITE program provides faculty with professional development devoted to maximizing the potential of mobile technologies, iPad apps, and Web 2.0 tools.

Faculty receive MacBook Pro laptops and participate in training throughout the year, exploring ways to expand the classroom beyond four walls and enhance student learning. For example, pre-service teachers develop video documentaries of historic buildings, and our writing-intensive program uses iPad apps—such as Corkulous—to engage students in writing.

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5 reasons to go to college (besides career advancement)

"In our discussions about education so little stress is laid on the pleasure of becoming an educated person, the enormous interest it adds to life," said one reader.

Conventional wisdom says that, unless you’re an entrepreneurial genius, you need a college degree to land a well-paying job; yet, thanks to the slumping economy, even that’s not a guarantee.

An anti-college backlash recently has emerged from the confluence of soaring tuition rates, political forces, and a desire for more accountability in higher education—not to mention a tough economy that has many students rethinking the value of a college education.

But for those critics who say the debilitating effects of college loans just aren’t worth what you get in return, the issue begs the question: “Is a postsecondary education really just about finding a good job after graduation?”

We recently put this question to our readers, and an overwhelming number said “no”—a postsecondary education is an experience that provides a return on investment that includes much more than a paycheck.

Here are the top five reasons why college is about more than preparing for a good career, according to our readers. What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

1.It teaches discipline  

“Secondary education teaches many other skills than those needed to find a job related to your major. Secondary education is where many people learn to independently discipline themselves; this skill can be applied to many other aspects of life than a career.” – Kara J. Lee, Lead Instructional Technology Facilitator, District Webmaster, Duplin County Schools

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SAT cheating scandal: Are stakes getting too high for college admission?

The case of a Great Neck, N.Y., man accused of being paid to take the SAT for high school students is once again prompting questions nationwide about how much cheating goes on in the world of high-stakes testing, reports the Christian Science Monitor. It’s also renewing concerns that the pressure placed on students to score well on a single test, which plays a big role in determining the academic future for so many high-schoolers, may be encouraging them to cheat…

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Hamilton College puts QR code on admissions poster

There is a shortage of new ideas in college recruiting, and each one has a brief shelf life, reports the Washington Post. Kudos, then, to Hamilton College in New York for being the first institution to think of printing a giant Quick Response code as an admissions poster. Hamilton College’s recruitment poster. The poster went out this fall to high school guidance offices around the nation, where dozens of posters compete for the attention of prospective applicants…

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New ways students cheat on tests

Are we in a cheating epidemic? Asks the Washington Post. There isn’t definitive data to reach that conclusion, though surveys suggest a big percentage of students cheat—and have for a long time. The Center for Academic Integrity at Clemson University has reported that more than 75 percent of college students cheat in some way on school work or exams at least once during their undergraduate careers. The nationwide rate of college students admitting to cheating on tests and exams is 22 percent. Of course, it’s not likely they waited until college to start to cheat…

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