The pros and cons of open technology

Campuses are moving into the future…and professors may be rejoicing

open-library-campus It’s not just the high cost of textbooks that have libraries scrambling to provide open education (OER) resources. As professors look at alternative options to retain copyright on printed works, and campuses look to expand community partnerships while decreasing budget, going open has never looked so good.

According to a new report, “Open Education Resources: The New Paradigm in Academic Libraries,” by Carmen Mitchell and Melanie Chu of California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) [published in the Journal of Library Innovation, Vol. 5, Issue 1, 2014], a combination of factors have converged to make the use of open resources integral to campuses across the country.

The report aimed to answer the question, ‘As academic library budgets are contracting while library usage is increasing, how can academic libraries best help campuses reduce costs and better serve their communities?”…Read More

5 practices you won’t see on campus anymore

Reminiscing about campus life, we wax poetic on practices long gone or on their way out

campus-practices-studentsLast year, we published a throw-back piece on technology in the K-12 classroom that was either on its way out or long gone—ranging from technology like floppy disks to The Oregon Trail. But higher education, though known to practice traditions longer, has also changed dramatically over the last few decades.

With ages ranging from early 60s to our interns who are literally still in college, eCampus News decided to compile a list of practices and traditions we either remembered when going to college that no longer exist or are quickly becoming extinct in its current form.

Have any practices or traditions you remember that aren’t on campus today? We’d love to hear your thoughts! Be sure to leave your comments in the section provided below, email me at mstansbury@ecampusnews.com, or find me @eSN_Meris on Twitter.…Read More

Here’s why the campus still matters

Students create viral videos on the benefits of a college campus

campus-students-videosWith the advent of educational technology, a number of benefits have been touted for online learning and its independence from a physical campus. However, according to some college students, there are a number of benefits to being on campus that are still relevant for today’s savvy students.

Herman Miller Education, a furniture and interior design company, recently asked students from campuses across the U.S. ‘Why does your campus matter?’ Outside of the obvious business and marketing perks to hosting this competition, students created thoughtful videos on the topic, voicing their opinions on the relevance of a physical campus that, perhaps, general media and proponents of online education are quick to dismiss.

For example, first place winner Kevin Czarnik, a Kendall College of Art and Design student, described in his video, “A Space for Creativity,” that “campus informs and shapes my creative and academic endeavors.”…Read More

10 tech do’s and don’ts for every campus

Research, case studies and data show that there are definite musts and must-not’s on the 21st Century college campus

campus-technologyThere’s a wealth of information on what to do, but also what not to do, concerning education technology on college campuses across the country. And though every campus is different, there are some blanket do’s and don’ts when it comes to technology use and integration—for students, professors, and campus administration.

Taking what the editors have read in current research, the interviews we’ve conducted over the last year with campus staff, the trends on social media, and feedback from readers, we’ve compiled a list of 10 do’s and don’ts that every campus should take into consideration when using and implementing various technologies.

From knowing how to best implement blended learning to fully understanding the process of digitizing resources, and from creating the most effective social media campaigns to knowing the limits of mobile devices, we hope this concise list of universal best practices can help keep your technology goals on track with your campus mission.…Read More

6 wonders of campus supercomputers

Powerful supercomputers are becoming more and more common on college campuses

supercomputers-campus-educationSupercomputers can help university researchers predict the weather, simulate the start of the universe, and understand human biology. They can help visualize data by projecting high quality images onto wall-sized screens or create life-size, immersive 3D simulations.

Even the size of the computers can be a imposing, with some filling spaces as large as a football field or an industrial warehouse.

But perhaps the most impressive advancement of today’s supercomputers is that you no longer have to be a wealthy research university to have one on campus. From computers made from Legos to computers that can beat humans in games of chess and Jeopardy!, there’s plenty to marvel at when it comes to campus supercomputers.…Read More

5 retention strategies across campus

These 5 retention ideas across campus departments can help students keep motivated

retention-students-campus

One of the biggest reasons I stuck with my private liberal arts college (Kenyon) was because of small classes and a really pretty landscape. Digging a little deeper, it was also because I found the class structure—conversation rather than lecture—interesting.

However, that was eight years ago, when Facebook was still in its infancy. In other words, a lot has changed, but a lot hasn’t. Yes, there are certain technology strategies that can be employed to engage students, but retention, one of the largest issues for higher-ed institutions today, takes more than a few digital signs and WiFi access.…Read More

Here’s proof that adaptive learning works

A look at the efficacy of an adaptive learning platform

adaptive-learning-collegeSandra Connelly, an assistant professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology, said when she teaches a general biology course, she’s always struck by how varied her students are.

“This year, I have almost 65 different majors spread across 400 students,” Connelly said. “Teaching them is a matter of trying to keep the attention of business majors, art majors, poetry majors, and then physicians assistance majors who really need this biology background.”

So, in 2009, she started using Pearson’s adaptive learning platform called Mastering in an attempt to create a more personalized experience. It’s really helped, Connelly said, and, of course, Pearson is happy to report the same. But the company no longer expects anecdotes like Connelly’s to be enough evidence that their products are effective.…Read More

10 Apple and Android Apps for campus security

These 10 campus safety apps cover a broad range that could be tailored for most institutions

security-campus-apps
Copyright: Twin Design/Shutterstock

Integrating campus security and technology, smartphone apps make campus safety more convenient. From GPS locators to social media monitoring, these cost-effective opportunities can improve existing systems for higher education faculty, staff and students.

[Listed in alphabetical order]

1. Campus Safe iPhone/iPad, Android, As low as $1 per user, per year…Read More

10 technology hallmarks for every campus

These campus musts may seem like no-brainers, but they’re critical for success

technology-campus-hallmarksWith so many technology options available today to help support and promote an institution’s campus culture, students and faculty, it’s not surprising that many IT and campus leaders feel overwhelmed with what they should invest in now and what they should implement later, especially with tight budgets.

But from having a good social media strategy to planning for Big Data collection, there are at least 10 technology hallmarks every campus should plan for immediately, if not implement as soon as possible.

Many of these hallmarks may seem simplistic, but can get caught in the solution shuffle if you’re not careful; for example, providing high-speed wireless broadband that can support multiple devices, or offering continuous IT support to students and faculty.…Read More

What universities need to know about the Heartbleed bug

Heartbleed security flaw, university data breaches have administrators on edge

heartbleed-campus-securityThe Heartbleed bug, a serious security flaw found earlier this month in the encryption software used by most secure websites, has many organizations scrambling to fix the issue — including universities.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln announced that it was scanning all of the university’s networks for any Heartbleed vulnerabilities. Vanderbilt University announced it was doing the same, as did Stony Brook University, and the University of Texas, among others.

Speaking with a student newspaper last week, Cam Beasley, chief information security officer at the University of Texas, sought to calm student nerves.…Read More