news roundup

Technology’s trend-influencing evolution

Catch up on the most compelling higher-ed news stories you may have missed this week

Every Friday, I’ll recap some of the most interesting and thought-provoking news developments that occurred over the week.

I can’t fit all of this week’s news stories here, though, so feel free to visit and read up on other news you may have missed.

This week, we focus on how changing technology is impacting higher education and its related marketplace. For instance, a new report explores the experiences of consortia that have implemented a common LMS in an effort to spread the word about the practice and its benefits. Plus, the advent of online and face-to-face instruction combines with telepresence to offer a unique learning solution for rural students. Also, the e-learning market is about to see some serious changes, influenced by trends and changes in technology.

Read on for more:

A technology that’s thriving with rural students
With an emphasis on flexibility and convenience, an innovative Georgia program is giving rural students—often working adults—new opportunities to pursue the jobs skills needed in today’s economy. The initiative, known as BlendFlex, is the brainchild of Central Georgia Technical College, which received a four-year government grant in 2013 to test blended-learning techniques in its healthcare program across an 11-county swath of rural Georgia.

Breaking: Billion-dollar e-learning market about to undergo major shift
An increasing number of colleges and universities are electing to replace their learning management systems (LMS), according to a comprehensive report from e-Literate, an education technology research and analysis site. The report, LMS Market Dynamics, is the first of the “e-Literate Big Picture” subscription services, which will provide colleges and universities, education companies, and investors with monthly, proprietary insight into the market.

5 considerations for a common LMS adoption
Cost savings and increasing operational efficiencies are among the top reasons educational consortia choose to adopt and use a common learning management system (LMS), according to a new report. The California Community Colleges Online Education Initiative (CCC OEI) worked with MindWires Consulting to determine what online consortia are doing and plan to do when faced with similar decisions around adopting a common LMS. The resulting report outlines a number of reasons for such a move.

How gamification is driving learning space design
Gamification is moving from simple trend status to a valid pedagogical approach that can deliver powerful learning experiences in higher education classrooms—and this growth has led to changes in how faculty approach physical learning spaces. Today’s students demand engaging educational experiences and thrive on stimulation and immediate feedback. As games become integrated into learning, game developers are realizing that many gaming attributes—challenges, rewards, and collaboration, to name just a few—have relevance in the classroom, too.

Laura Ascione