California State University Selects Pearson to Launch Cal State Online

Fully online program to increase access to higher education for students.

Long Beach, CA (PRWEB) August 22, 2012

The California State University, the nation’s largest four-year university system, has selected Pearson to launch Cal State Online, a fully online program designed to increase access to higher education. Cal State Online will launch in January 2013 with a selection of undergraduate degree completion and professional master’s programs, leveraging the multitude of programs currently available across the CSU.
“As a university system that is devoted to access, affordability and quality, the CSU needed an educational partner with the highest levels of expertise, experience and demonstrated success launching high-growth online learning programs,” said John Welty, President of Fresno State and Chair of the Cal State Online Board. “We partnered with Pearson because they offer a robust suite of services, support and a collection of success stories through their work with other universities, making them a perfect fit for Cal State Online.”
“The CSU is making tremendous efforts to increase access to learning opportunities for students,” said Don Kilburn, Vice Chairman of Pearson Higher Education. “We are honored to partner with them to support rapid growth of a world class online learning program that drives academic and career success.”
Cal State Online will use Pearson’s online learning technology, services and support to keep students engaged from enrollment through graduation. These include Pearson LearningStudio, a cloud-based learning management system with advanced data analytics to monitor student performance and learning outcomes; the EQUELLA digital content repository; course development and instructional design services; and lead generation, marketing and enrollment services. In addition, Cal State Online will use Pearson’s academic training and consulting services to provide additional support to instructors.
“Increasingly, students pursuing higher education today are non-traditional students. Fully online learning programs extend access to quality education for students who need more flexible learning than a traditional classroom allows. Our collaboration with Cal State Online will provide faculty and students with a range of services and support that will help ensure students’ success,” said Matt Leavy, CEO of Pearson eCollege.
For more information, visit
About The California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 427,000 students and 44,000 faculty and staff. The CSU awards about 99,000 degrees annually and since its creation in 1961 has conferred nearly 2.6 million. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California. Connect with and learn more about the CSU at CSU Social Media. Show how the CSU matters to you and take action.
About Pearson
Pearson, the world’s leading learning company, has global reach and market-leading businesses in education, business information and consumer publishing (NYSE: PSO). The company provides innovative print and digital education materials, including personalized learning programs such as MyLab/Mastering, education services including custom publishing, and content-independent platforms including the EQUELLA digital repository and Pearson LearningStudio online learning platform.


Congress must reform immigration laws that send top STEM graduates to China

Jonas Korlach left Cornell with a Ph.D. in biochemistry, a patent on technology that effectively reads the entire human genome, and an idea that spawned a company now employing 285 people and generating more than $30 million in revenue per year, the Christian Science Monitor reports. Yet because of American immigration laws, Dr. Jonas would have been kicked out of the United States, along with his invention, the jobs he created, and the revenue his company generates, had a US Congresswoman – Rep. Anna Eshoo (D) of California – not assisted him in 2004. Thousands of immigrants earn advanced degrees from top US universities every year. They train under our best faculty (many of whom are also immigrants), conduct cutting-edge research, and leave with the skills and knowledge necessary to power our innovation economy. But with a dysfunctional immigration policy, America is now losing these creators of tomorrow’s great companies to competitors abroad…

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NJ governor signs university merger bill

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed a major higher education reorganization bill on Wednesday, a hard-won political and policy victory that eluded two prior governors and is designed to create regional centers of academic excellence in South, Central and North Jersey, the Associated Press reports. Christie, a Republican, lauded the achievement with stops in Newark, New Brunswick and Camden, the three cities most affected by the legislation. The actual bill signing happened at Rutgers University’s main campus, with remarks and ceremonial signings in the North and South. Christie, 49, who is slated to give the keynote speech at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday, planned to cap the day with a town hall-style event in Salem County. Christie said the bill “brings a new era to higher education in the state” by dissolving the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and shifting its assets to Rutgers and Rowan universities and enhancing the footprint of both schools…

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The most politically active colleges

With another presidential election looming, a politically-active student body is an important thing to look for in a prospective college, the Huffington Post reports. What if you want to protest something or celebrate something else? It is good to have friends to do this with. The Princeton Review recently named the most politically active colleges in the nation. Washington DC-area schools dominated the list, with American University and Georgetown University taking the top two spots…

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Unpopular federal rules still might have life

HEA talks could involved state authorization rules.

Online education policy analysts say a set of federal regulations aimed at web-based college programs, struck down by a U.S. Court of Appeals, could re-emerge in Congress’s debate over the next Higher Education Act (HEA) renewal.

“State authorization” regulations would have required colleges with online programs to register courses in every state in which they operate—a hugely expensive undertaking for many colleges. Before the court ruling against the rules, many colleges and universities said they no longer would offer online classes in states with the most arduous regulatory standards.

Failure to abide by state authorization rules would have cut off federal aid to non-compliant colleges.

Jarret Cummings, a blogger and analyst for EDUCAUSE, wrote recently that ed-tech advocates who cheered the court’s decision against state authorization regulations should keep an eye on the re-emergence of the regulatory system in the coming year, when Congress is expected to re-authorize the HEA, adjusting federal rules and standards for higher education.

Cummings said this month’s scathing report detailing misdeeds in the for-profit college industry pointed to a lack of state regulations as a reason that for-profit schools have skirted so many established rules and laws.

In the for-profit college report, released by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Cummings said there is a “troubling reference to correspondence courses in conjunction with distance education, which also arose in relation to the proposed distance education Pell Grant provisions included in a bill passed by the Senate Appropriations subcommittee.”

Cummings warned campus officials that “we may hear more about distance education state authorization”

Harkin, the Senate’s foremost critic of the for-profit education industry, said in his most recent report that “many states have taken a passive or minimal role in approving institutions, reviewing and addressing complaints from students and the public, and ensuring that colleges are in compliance with state consumer protection laws,” giving colleges the chance to exploit those lax standards.

Michael Goldstein and Greg Ferenbach of the D.C.-based law firm, Dow Loehnes, both of whom have tracked state authorization rules, wrote that at least some of the regulations could come to the policy forefront in 2013 as lawmakers determine the best rules for the exploding online education industry.


Samsung tablet takes aim at iPad—with a pen

The stylus could be useful for those who need to draw or sketch on a tablet.

The tablet-computer market is like guerrilla warfare. One huge army—Apple—dominates the land, while a ragtag group of insurgents keeps raiding and probing, hoping to find some opening it can exploit.

With Samsung’s new Galaxy Note 10.1, the rebels have scored a small victory. It’s a tablet that does something that the iPad doesn’t do, and it does it well. This victory won’t win the war, though.

Available now in the U.S., the $499 tablet comes with a pen, or more precisely, a stylus. It doesn’t leave marks on paper, but the tablet’s screen responds to it. I found it a pleasure to use: It’s precise and responsive, and it glides easily across the screen.

There are styluses available for the iPad, but they’re not very good. The iPad’s screen can’t sense sharp objects, so any stylus has to be fairly blunt. Many of them have rubber tips, which resist being dragged across the screen.

The Galaxy Note has an additional layer in its screen, tuned to sense special, sharp-pointed pens through magnetism.

The Note is not the first iPad competitor to work with a stylus.

The HTC Flyer came out last year with the same ability, but several missteps limited its appeal. First, it was half the size of the iPad yet cost just as much, and that was without the pen. Second, there was no slot for the pen in the body of the tablet, making it easy to lose. The pen also was expensive, costing $80 to replace.

Samsung then built pen-sensitivity into the first Galaxy Note, a smart phone launched early this year.

Though well-received, the tablet had an odd size, with a 5-inch screen. That makes it very big for a smart phone but small for a tablet. With the Galaxy Note 10.1, Samsung is taking the pen squarely into iPad territory.

So, what can you do with the pen? Well, this is where the Samsung offensive starts faltering. There just isn’t that much the pen is useful for yet, because stylus-equipped tablets are so new.

You can jot down notes, or edit photos in an included version of Photoshop. You can scrawl personal notes to people and eMail them. Instead of using the on-screen keyboard, you can use handwriting and let the tablet interpret it. You can even enter web addresses this way.


Obama criticizes Romney over college assistance

Obama pledged to preserve Pell Grant spending.

President Barack Obama accused rival Mitt Romney of being oblivious to the burdens of paying for college on Tuesday, telling young voters in battleground Ohio that his opponent’s education policies amount to nothing more than encouraging them to tap their parents for money or “shop around” for the best deal.

“This is his plan. That’s his answer to a young person hoping to go to college — shop around and borrow more money from your parents if you have to. Not only is that not a good answer, it’s not even an answer,” Obama said at Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno.

Turning to young voters, a key part of his 2008 coalition, the president sought to draw a bright line with Romney on education policy in his latest attempt to meld Romney with the House Republican budget blueprint offered Rep. Paul Ryan, Romney’s running mate.

Earlier, at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, he said: “Not everybody has parents who have the money to lend. That may be news to some folks.”

Obama and Romney remain locked in a tight presidential campaign a week before the former Massachusetts governor formally claims his party’s nomination at the GOP convention in Tampa, Fla.

Both campaigns have broadened their message to voters in recent weeks beyond the economy, which remains the most pivotal issue for voters less than three months before the election.

Romney sought to distance himself from Missouri GOP Senate nominee Todd Akin, who apologized after saying in an interview that women’s bodies are sometimes able to prevent pregnancies after what he called “a legitimate rape.” Romney said in a statement that fellow Missouri Republicans had urged Akin to quit and “I think he should accept their counsel and exit the Senate race.”

Romney was raising money to bolster his campaign in Texas, where he told donors that his campaign was “a little wiser in our spending of dollars” than Obama’s campaign, pointing to new finance documents released by Obama’s campaign on Monday that showed it spent more money in July than it brought in.

Romney and Republicans have outraised Obama and Democrats for the past three months, a sign of broad GOP interest in defeating the incumbent president.

“I’m not managing their campaign for them, but we’re going to spend our money wiser,” Romney said in Houston, where he was expected to pull in more than $6 million. “We’re going to spend it to win.”

In a nod to oil-rich Texas, Romney told donors he planned to announce a “comprehensive energy plan” during a stop in New Mexico later this week but offered few details beyond a focus in part on fossil-based fuels. Romney said his aim was to “fully take advantage of our energy resources.”


Turnitin’s Free Webcast Series Helps Educators Improve Student Writing

Turnitin’s Free Webcast Series Helps Educators Improve Student Writing

Popular series begins with a focus on aligning standards and identifying plagiarism

OAKLAND, Calif. – Aug. 21, 2012Turnitin, the leader in originality checking and online grading, today announced its new schedule of 30-minute webcasts to help secondary and higher education institutions advance student writing skills. The new weekly series is a continuation of the popular spring webcast series, which attracted more than 3,000 attendees.

To register for the webcasts, please visit:

“This webcast series is a fast, informative way for educators to learn about recent trends and best practices for integrating technology and pedagogy to improve student writing,” said Jason Chu, senior education manager at Turnitin. “We’ve assembled a terrific team of thought leaders and visionaries to share how we can teach better writing in the digital age.”

Upcoming webcasts include:

  • Partners in Education: Creating Common Core Rubrics
    Explains the process and intent behind the creation of Common Core rubrics and how they can help schools adapt to the new standards. Presented by Dawn Lewis, English instructor and co-chair of the English Professional Learning Council.
  • Bridging the Gap: Common Core Rubrics for Secondary and Higher
    How Common Core rubrics can close the skills gap between secondary and higher education students. Presented by Dr. Shelly Valdez, Director of Educational Collaboration for IEBC.
  • The Plagiarism Spectrum: Tagging 10 Types of Unoriginal Work
    Examines a recent report published by Turnitin intended to move plagiarism beyond the black-and-white definition of “literary theft” to one that captures the nuances of how plagiarism can take shape in student writing. Presented by Ray Huang, Customer Programs Manager at Turnitin.
  • Engaging Faculty & Students to Resist Plagiarism Through Policy & Practice
    Implementing academic integrity policies to engage faculty and students to learn how to avoid the different types of plagiarism. Presented by David B. Wangaard, Director of The School for Ethical Education.
  • From the Margins: Providing Effective Feedback on Student Papers
    Presents findings from a recent Turnitin analysis of instructor comments on student papers and examines approaches for leveraging the use of marginal comments to drive student understanding and engagement. Presented by Jason Chu, Senior Education Manager at Turnitin.

About Turnitin
Turnitin is the global leader in evaluating and improving student writing. The company’s cloud-based service for originality checking, online grading and peer review saves instructors time and provides rich feedback to students. One of the most widely distributed educational applications in the world, Turnitin is used by more than 10,000 institutions in 126 countries to manage the submission, tracking and evaluation of student papers online. Turnitin also offers iThenticate, a plagiarism detection service for commercial markets, and WriteCheck, a suite of formative tools for writers. Turnitin is backed by Warburg Pincus and is headquartered in Oakland, Calif., with an international office in Newcastle, U.K. For more information, please visit

All products and services mentioned in this document are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

Media Contacts

• Chris Harrick, Vice President of Marketing, 510-764-7579,

• Emily Embury, C. Blohm & Associates, 608-216-7300 x19,


Kaplan Partners with ScholarCentric to Increase Graduation Rates and College Readiness

Kaplan Partners with ScholarCentric to Increase Graduation Rates and College Readiness

NEW YORK (Aug. 21, 2012)Kaplan K12 Learning Services, which partners with schools and districts to measurably propel student achievement, and ScholarCentric™, a leading provider of programs designed to help students maximize their potential by developing the social-emotional/resiliency skills that are critical to engagement and academic performance, have joined forces to offer an expanded portfolio of college readiness solutions.

The path to college can be very challenging, and students need support to build confidence and motivation as well as academic skills. Many students who lack these qualities and skills struggle as they move through middle and high school. According to Civic Enterprises and the Everyone Graduates Center, the high school dropout rate remains elevated. Between 2001 and 2009, there was only a 3.5 percent increase nationally in the high school graduation rate. While 75 percent of U.S. students graduated in four years, about one in four still failed to graduate with their class.

To address the challenges that students face on their path to college, Kaplan, together with ScholarCentric, is growing its offerings to ensure that middle and high school students are confident, engaged, and motivated – key factors in improving academic performance and graduation rates according to a growing body of research. ScholarCentric’s research-based offerings for schools and districts include assessments and curricula for addressing the key social-emotional skills that are critical prerequisites to successful learning, including connections with educators, academic confidence, and intrinsic motivation. Equipped with concrete data on which students are at risk for academic failure and the underlying reasons why they struggle, educators are able to address the specific social-emotional needs of the student, leading to improved academic performance.

ScholarCentric’s programs complement Kaplan’s offerings for schools and districts, which include teacher resources to support rigorous, differentiated instruction and assessment; test readiness options for the PSAT, SAT, ACT and AP exams; skill-building lessons to deepen students’ knowledge of curriculum content and to teach critical thinking; as well as programs to guide students through the college admissions process.

“Kaplan and ScholarCentric share a common mission of working with educators to increase high school graduation rates and help more students get into college,” said Mark Freidberg, Vice President & General Manager of Kaplan K12. “Our ability to help students succeed on the SAT, ACT, PSAT and AP exams, combined with ScholarCentric’s Success Highways solution, will help ensure that students are academically resilient, supported to do their best, and inspired to go to college.”

“We believe that by pairing our unique, research-based solutions focused on student engagement with Kaplan’s comprehensive and effective college and career readiness offerings, we should see even better outcomes,” said Steven Weigler, CEO of ScholarCentric. “This partnership enables school districts to address the comprehensive range of student needs from middle school through college.”

About Kaplan K12 Learning Services
Kaplan K12 Learning Services, LLC (, a unit of Kaplan Test Prep (, partners with schools to measurably propel student achievement. Kaplan K12 offers state test readiness programs to help students meet and exceed state standards, and college preparation solutions that support students as they prepare for college entrance exams and the admissions process. Its solutions also provide teachers with robust teaching resources and professional development support to impact achievement in their classrooms. Kaplan was recently recognized by ComputED Gazette’s 2012 Best Educational Awards (BESSIEs) for its ACT On Demand course as the “Top High School Test Preparation Website” and for its Teach! Strategies and Resources as the top Curriculum Development program in the “Teacher Tools” category. Kaplan Test Prep is a division of Kaplan Inc. (, a subsidiary of The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).

About ScholarCentric
ScholarCentric focuses on helping students stay in school and achieve academic success. The company’s flagship product, Success Highways, is an innovative, research-based combination of assessment, curriculum and professional development designed to help transition middle and high school students into the higher grades and develop the academic resiliency skills they need to learn the rigorous coursework required to achieve a high school diploma. With Success Highways, students stay in school, score higher on achievement tests, and prepare for future education. This innovative program is aligned with state standards and was developed from the results of 15 years of University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee research and a seven-year pilot program in an urban school district. For more information, visit:

Note to editors: Kaplan is a subsidiary of The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO)

Media Contacts

• Russell Schaffer, Kaplan K12 Learning Services, 212.453.7538,

• Kristen Plemon, C. Blohm & Associates, 608-216-7300 x18,


GoingOn Kicks Off “Connected Educator” Webinar Series on Aug. 28 with Session on Faculty Commons

In recognition of August as Connected Educator Month, GoingOn Networks announced that it will kick off its free “Connected Educator” webinar series on August 28th with the session, “Benefits of Deploying an Institution-wide Faculty Commons: How CUNY, National University and are Utilizing Social Technologies to Improve Professional Development, Curriculum Sharing, Grant Collaboration and Broader Faculty Communications.” The 45-minute webinar begins at 2pm ET/11am PT on Aug. 28 and it will also be offered again at 2pm ET on September 18. Registrations are currently being accepted on the GoingOn website.

In these two sessions, Jon Corshen, CEO of GoingOn Networks, and Dr. Colin Marlaire, Director of the Faculty Center for Excellence in Teaching and Training at National University, will explore varying models of deploying an institution-wide Faculty Commons by examining the approaches of CUNY Faculty Commons, National University’s Faculty Network and consumer offerings such as Academia.Edu.

“With so much attention focused on online learning, the potential of social technologies to transform faculty communications and collaboration has often been overlooked. But today, many institutions are beginning to recognize the power of creating a common online space where faculty can connect, share ideas, develop multi-disciplinary curriculum and discover opportunities for collaborative work,” said Corshen. “For school administration, Faculty Commons offer a dramatically better way to manage communications, replacing antiquated portals, list-serves and ‘institutional SPAM’.”

In fact, earlier this month in a video about Connected Educator Month, U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan remarked on the importance of educators connecting with one another in online social environments. In his remarks, Secretary Duncan said, “We know that online professional learning through communities and networks is powerful, particularly when done in collaboration with a school’s professional learning community.” He continued, saying: “The model of continuous learning and problem solving within these online spaces is integral to teaching and leading in the 21st century.”

GoingOn Networks serves a spectrum of education institutions including colleges and universities as well as K-12 organizations such as New Teacher Center, National Writing Project and Reach Associates. While Connected Educator month is largely a celebration of connecting educators in the K-12 grades, GoingOn recognizes the value and benefit of educators working with one another to share best practices and collaborate at all levels of education, including at the university and college level.

To help higher education faculty members understand the benefits of participating with their colleagues in an online social environment, GoingOn developed the Connected Educator webinar series. During the Aug. 28 and Sept. 18 sessions, participants will:

• Understand the basic design & features of today’s Faculty Commons
• Examine the various uses, benefits and resource savings of a commons-based approach
• Learn how to avoid common challenges and pitfalls of implementation and adoption
• Gain a better understanding of how a Faculty Commons fits within your broader technology landscape, as well as different deployment and integration models

As recently stated in CUNY’s Faculty Commons Quarterly, “[the Commons model] assumes a definition of faculty professional development as something done by faculty, not something done to them.”

Space is limited for these free sessions. Professionals from the office of CIO, academic affairs and continuing education, provosts, chancellors, deans of faculty and others interested in attending either session should go to the following link to register:

For more information about GoingOn, visit

About GoingOn Networks, Inc.
GoingOn provides colleges and universities and educational organizations with an innovative, On-Demand communications and collaboration environment where students, faculty and administrators can more effectively connect, converse and engage across all aspect of their academic life experience. As the reliance on social and mobile technologies continues to accelerate, institutions are being challenged to create a more modern connected campus where students and faculty can more easily communicate, share resources and connect with each other, from anywhere and at any time.

The GO Platform allows institutions to build a privately branded academic social network where users can more easily access school-wide information and resources and come together to interact, share ideas and expand their knowledge base. The GoingOn solution can be easily and quickly deployed without requiring development or technical resources and will grow organically across the campus. The platform combines an intuitive Personal Virtual Commons with Facebook-like activity streams, self-service tools for building collaborative spaces and integrated academic networking features. For more information or to learn more about GoingOn, visit

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