Tech experts, educators see massive online learning shift by 2020

Three in four Americans say college is too expensive.

Higher education’s economics are unsustainable and vulnerable to technologies that could make college campuses the hub of the privileged few, according to a vast collection of opinions from international technologists and educators.

The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project and Elon University’s Imagining the Internet Center recently asked more than 1,000 digital learning experts to weigh two drastically different scenarios for how higher education would look in 2020.

About four in 10 survey respondents said there would be “modest” changes in the way college is taught and paid for over the next eight years, and six in 10 expected a fundamental shift in the use of web-based technologies to upturn the current campus order, lowering costs, making education more accessible, and, in some cases, lowering standards.…Read More

College students more likely to tweet

Teens and young adults use Twitter more than any other age group.

College students aren’t flocking to Twitter, but they’ve proven more likely to type the 140-character updates than most demographic groups, especially teenagers and young adults.

Of American adults who use the internet, 8 percent use the microblogging site Twitter, according to a recent survey from Pew Internet & American Life Project. Only 2 percent of the more than 2,200 respondents use the site on a daily basis.

One of the most striking contrasts can be seen in tweeters’ education levels: 9 percent of those with some college experience used the platform, equaling the same percentage of tweeters who had completed college or moved on to post-graduate education, according to the Pew findings.…Read More

Image-conscious youth rein in social networking

Three in 10 young adults surveyed say they "never" trust social media sites.
Three in 10 young adults surveyed say they "never" trust social media sites.

It might go against conventional wisdom, but a new report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project is adding fuel to the argument that young people are fast becoming the gurus of online reputation management, especially when it comes to social networking sites.

Among other things, the study found that young adults ages 18-29 are the most likely to limit the amount of personal information they share online—and the least likely to trust free online services ranging from Facebook to LinkedIn and MySpace.

Marlene McManus, 21, is among those young adults. On the job hunt since graduating from Clark University in Massachusetts, she’s been “scouring” her Facebook page, removing photos that contain beer cups and any other signs of college exploits. She’s also dropped Twitter altogether.…Read More

Study: Millennial generation more education, less employed

The most detailed study to date of the 18- to 29-year-old Millennial generation finds this group probably will be the most educated in American history. But the 50 million Millennials also have the highest share who are unemployed or out of the workforce in nearly four decades, USA Today reports. “It’s a very consequential generation,” says Paul Taylor of the Pew Research Center, the report’s co-editor. “It has made its mark in some fairly dramatic ways.” Overall, Pew says, Millennials are confident, upbeat, and open to change. They’re more ethnically and racially diverse than their elders and also less religious. Although there is no one-size-fits-all description of the individuals within a generation, Pew says its findings show clear, distinctive traits for this group, particularly in certain areas. For instance, they’re more politically active at an earlier age, and 41 percent use just a cell phone and no landline for their telephone communications…

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