7 ways to strengthen your digital learning strategy

When colleges and universities take a strategic approach to digital learning, and when they invest in designing and developing high-quality courses and programs, they are able to realize critical objectives, according to a digital learning report from Arizona State University and The Boston Consulting Group.

The report examines the upfront and ongoing costs of supporting digital learning, and it also looks at the returns in terms of student access, student outcomes, and economic impacts on students and institutions.

And although each institution will take a slightly different path toward digital learning, the promising practices outlined in the report can act as a helpful starting point.…Read More

A major report on digital learning from Arizona State University

On April 4th, Last week Lou Pugliese joined the Future Trends Forum to describe a forthcoming research project he’d just completed. I’d heard about the research secondhand and was intrigued. One text described it as looking into institutional return on investment (ROI) for digital learning. So I convinced Lou, senior innovation fellow and managing director technology innovation Action Lab at Arizona State University, also co-creator of Blackboard, to appear on the Forum and give the community an advance look into the report’s findings, before they were published:

I’m grateful to Lou for his generous time. (You see why the Forum is so cool?)…Read More

7 ways institutions can strengthen their digital learning strategy

When colleges and universities take a strategic approach to digital learning, and when they invest in designing and developing high-quality courses and programs, they are able to realize critical objectives, according to a new digital learning report from Arizona State University and The Boston Consulting Group.

The report examines the upfront and ongoing costs of supporting digital learning, and it also looks at the returns in terms of student access, student outcomes, and economic impacts on students and institutions.

And although each institution will take a slightly different path toward digital learning, the promising practices outlined in the report can act as a helpful starting point.…Read More

Empty classrooms and online learning

A study conducted by the University System of Georgia found that its buildings are only in use 25 percent of the work week.

The University System of Georgia’s buildings are empty about 75 percent of the work week, a study conducted by the system has found. The findings have already prompted some system building projects to be halted and other universities to consider similar studies on their own campuses.

According to the study, which examined all 31 of Georgia’s public universities, the low use may be because of the way most residential campuses condense the school day to fit between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday through Thursday.

As a potential solution, the researchers suggest forgetting about those “peak hours” and spreading the classroom use throughout the day, aiming for the buildings to be used 40 hours per week.…Read More

From recession’s wake, education innovation blooms

Public officials, desperate to cut costs and measure results, are open to change in education.

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — On a warm spring evening, hundreds of investment bankers, venture capitalists and geeky tech entrepreneurs gathered near the pool at the Phoenician, a luxury resort outside Phoenix, for a high-profile gathering of education innovators.

As guests sipped cocktails and nibbled hors d’oeuvres, the mood was upbeat.

And why not? Major innovations – forged by the struggles of the Great Recession and fostered by technology – are coming to higher education.…Read More

MOOC to explore digital badges’ role in online learning, professional credentials

Digital badges could allow students to work toward degree requirements and help employees demonstrate skills that would help advance their career.

As educators and companies look for ways to denote learning outside of the traditional college credit, some are beginning to look toward digital badges as a serious contender.

The badges could be particularly helpful for providing credentials for students who take online classes or massive open online course (MOOCs).

The WICHE Cooperative for Education Technologies (WCET) has partnered with Sage Road Solutions LLC, Mozilla, and Blackboard, Inc. to explore the possibilities of digital badges through — what else? — a MOOC.…Read More

Howard to launch largest online learning program at historically black university

Howard University will launch Howard University Online (HU-Online) in Fall 2014.

Private historically black colleges and universities have struggled in recent years to make progress when it comes to online education. But one private HBCU is hoping to step up its game, partnering with the learning company Pearson to add 25 new programs to its offerings over the next few years.

Howard University, located in Washington, D.C., will launch Howard University Online in Fall 2014. The initiative will create the largest fully online learning program at any HBCU in the country.

“This is one aspect of a bigger strategy for us to really enhance our instructional environment and our capacity of what we offer overall,” said Wayne A.I. Frederick, Howard’s provost and chief academic officer. “Obviously, the way current students coming from high school and community colleges are learning, this kind of initiative helps us provide the most contemporary and state-of-the-art environment for them.”…Read More

University of Maryland University College to offer credit for MOOCs

As UMUC is specifically focused on adult learners, the university already accepts many forms of non-traditional academic credit.

University of Maryland University College (UMUC) believes it will be the first university in the Maryland system to let students earn academic credit for taking a massive open online course (MOOC).

But if the experiment is successful, UMUC won’t be a rarity for just the state; it will be an anomaly for all of American higher education.

Recent attempts by other institutions to offer credit for MOOCs have not gone smoothly. Last year, Colorado State University-Global Campus began offering credit for a computer science MOOC. Nearly a year later, no students have taken advantage of the deeply discounted course.…Read More

2U partners with universities for online for-credit courses, master’s degree program

Baylor University, Southern Methodist University and Temple University have joined 2U’s Semester Online initiative.

Three top-tier universities in May dropped out of a partnership with the company 2U that would have allowed the schools to pool together their resources to offer for-credit online courses to students. It was a high profile snag in much-publicized deal that had included 10 universities in total.

Three other universities have filled those vacancies, 2U announced on July 30.

Baylor University, Southern Methodist University, and Temple University joined Semester Online as “Charter Affiliate Partners,” according to the announcement.…Read More

Carnegie Mellon company to offer courseware customizable with learning analytics

Acrobatiq will offer customizable online courseware, consulting services and learning analytics products to educators.

Carnegie Mellon University’s Open Learning Initiative (OLI) has been a pioneer in online education since 2001. It began offering free and open online courses that could assess student outcomes years before the words massive, open, online and course assembled into a catchy acronym or “learning analytics” became a common buzz phrase.

But for the creators of Carnegie Mellon’s new subsidiary company Acrobatiq, OLI was just the beginning.

“The work done by OLI and CMU has laid a great foundation,” Eric Frank, the company’s CEO said in a blog post last week. “The time seems right to take it to the next level, and Carnegie Mellon has formed Acrobatiq for this purpose. Through Acrobatiq, we will be able to scale up capacity to serve more learners and institutions, accelerate innovation, and ensure financial sustainability from revenue versus a reliance on grant funding.”…Read More