The Shrinking of Higher Ed — A Special Report from The Chronicle of Higher Education
A special report on the implications of the enrollment contraction.

Excerpt:

Nearly 1.3 million students have disappeared from American colleges since the Covid-19 pandemic began. That enrollment contraction comes at a precarious moment for the sector. Inflation is driving up costs and straining budgets, stock-market volatility is putting downward pressure on endowment returns, and federal stimulus funds are running out. Why is the enrollment crunch happening now? How are colleges responding? What might turn things around? Those are the questions fueling this special report.

A Public Regional on the Edge — from chronicle.com by Eric Kelderman
New Jersey City University’s plan to grow its way out of financial trouble backfired. What went wrong?

Excerpts:

NJCU’s story is a cautionary tale for similar institutions — small public regional colleges with ambitions to expand in a crowded higher-education market. While its real-estate dealings have drawn unfavorable scrutiny, the university was responding to challenges that face its peers, in northern New Jersey and around the country: increased competition for a declining number of high-school graduates.

Public regional universities, like NJCU, enroll about 40 percent of all college students nationally, and a far larger percentage of minority, low-income, and first-generation students than better-known flagships and top research universities do.

But a lack of state support, limited ability to attract students from outside the region, and sparse fund raising have made the university vulnerable to economic downturns and demographic shifts that have led to fewer high-school graduates, especially in the Northeast and upper Midwest.

Linked to in the above article was this article:

Declining enrollment has Western Michigan University on budgetary tightrope — from mlive.com by Julie Mack

Excerpts:

KALAMAZOO, MI — Western Michigan University has 17,835 students this fall, its lowest enrollment since the 1960s.

The number is down 6% from last fall. Down 27% from a decade ago, when the fall headcount was 24,598. Down 41% from 20 years ago, when WMU’s fall count peaked at 29,732.

And thanks to a declining birthrate and a shrinking percentage of new high school graduates enrolling in college, that downward enrollment trend is likely to continue indefinitely.

Rather, “what COVID did was force our hand after years of pressure created by declining enrollment and demographic trends that suggest declines will continue for the next decade,” she said. “So while COVID brought our financial situation into sharp relief, the budget cut was a measure taken to relieve pressure created over many, many years.”


A relevant addendum here:

Avoiding the Trap of Too Little Too Late — from tytonpartners.com by Trace Urdan; with thanks to Ryan Craig for this resource

Excerpt:

The challenges facing higher education are well understood: a demographic cliff of traditional-aged applicants, a declining proportion of full-pay families, and a growing skepticism of the value of (ever-more) expensive post-secondary degrees with resulting student consumerism. Add to this rapidly rising technological complexity, deferred maintenance on deteriorating physical assets, escalating administrative costs associated with student services and supports, and a burgeoning array of college substitutes, and the challenges are clear. The combination of lower tuition revenue and higher costs points toward an inevitable sector consolidation. And while many college administrators will readily acknowledge this point in the abstract, few will consider that it might apply to them.

 

To future-proof a workforce, kill the perpetual hiring machine and embrace lifelong learning — from fortune.com by Clay Dillow

Excerpt:

A looming economic slowdown, the Great Resignation, a relentlessly expanding skills gap, and employees that would simply rather work from home. This week at Fortune’s CEO Initiative forum, a panel of company executives discussed the litany of challenges they face in developing and maintaining their workforces over the next several years.

 

I Never Wanted to Be a School Administrator. Here’s Why I Changed My Mind. — from edsurge.com by Patrick Harris II

Excerpt:

What made him so unique? Maybe it was his humility. He didn’t claim to have all the answers. Maybe it was the trust he put in me as a new teacher on his team. When I asked him which curriculum we used, he said, “I trust you to collaborate with the team and build it. I have some resources here to help us ensure that we create a scope-and-sequence for the literacy skills our students need. But we have to create it.” Maybe it was how frequently he said “we.”

Principal Williams had to answer to the school board, to our school’s executive director and to parents, but when it came down to decision-making, everything was up for discussion. I could walk into his office for anything. I felt motivated to become more involved in the school community because he made room for me.

He was flattening the hierarchy.

Cultivating a culture where every voice matters is not the quickest solution, nor is it the easiest, but my hope is that it will have a long-lasting impact at our school. The more that we flatten the hierarchy, focus our attention on building trust and talk more with one another, the better chance we have of creating schools that teachers want to stay at and that students want to learn in.

 

When It Comes to Picking Edtech, Are Schools Listening to Teachers? — from edsurge.com by Nadia Tamez-Robledo

Excerpt:

But where in the conversation are the people implementing those tools: the teachers? And how much say do they—or should they—have in edtech decisions?

For both questions, as it turns out, it depends on who you ask.

In a survey released earlier this year, the edtech company Clever found that 85 percent of administrators say teachers are involved in choosing tools. When the company asked teachers, more than 60 percent said they were hardly ever—or never—involved in those choices.

As we started asking educators, administrators and experts about the issue as part of an investigation into how teachers inform the development of edtech products, everyone agreed: teacher voice should be part of edtech decisions.

So what explains the disconnect?


Addendum on 11/9/22:

Lessons from Treadmills and Owls: The Most Important Feature in Educational Technology Products — from opencontent.org by David Wiley; with thanks to Mr. Stephen Downes for this resource

Excerpt:

The primary point, of course, is this: unused features in exercise technologies and educational technologies can improve neither fitness nor learning. From this perspective, one might argue:

The most important feature in educational technology products is the nudge – the feature that persuades you to actually use the features that will improve learning.

Duolingo is a great example here. On its surface, the language learning app may appear rather straightforward. But there are some pretty sophisticated things happening behind the scenes that make your language learning more effective.


 

2023 Top 10 IT Issues: Foundation Models — from educause.edu

Excerpt:

Recent times have brought about a Great Rethink that is upending previous models of management and working. Higher education is no exception. In 2023, institutional and technology leaders are ready for a new approach.

The EDUCAUSE 2023 Top 10 IT Issues help describe the foundation models that colleges and universities will develop next year and beyond, acting on what was learned in the pandemic and framed by the three building blocks of leadership, data, and work and learning.

See where things are headed in 2023 and beyond.
.

The Educause 2023 Top 10 IT Issues
.

From DSC:
At this point in time, I’d find your visionary, innovative, tech-savvy leaders out there — and not just for IT-related positions but for Presidents, Provosts, CFO’s, Heads of HR, and similar levels of positions (and ideally on the Boards as well.) Such people need to be at the table when strategies are hammered out.

For example, if your institution didn’t get seriously into online learning long before Covid19 hit, I’d clear house and go back to the drawing board on your leadership.

Also, data won’t save higher ed. New directions/pathways might. But I’m doubtful that new sources of data will — no matter how they are sliced and diced. That sort of thing is too much at the fringe of things — and not at the heart of what’s being offered. The marketplace will eventually dictate to higher ed which directions institutions of traditional higher education need to go in. Or perhaps I should say that this is already starting to occur.

If alternatives to institutions of traditional higher education continue to grow in acceptance and usage — and don’t involve current institutions of higher ed — those sorts of institutions may already be too late. If more corporations fully develop their own training programs, pathways, and credentials, there may be even fewer students to go around.

A final thought: Cheaper forms of online-based learning for the liberal arts may be what actually saves the liberal arts in the long run.


Also relevant/see:


 

HundrED Global Collection 2023 — from hundred.org
Meet the 100 most impactful innovations that are changing the face of education in a post-COVID world.

The HundrED Global Collection 2023

Excerpt:

The year 2022 has been a year to look to the future, as the global education conversation moves again toward themes of education transformation and the futures of education. The 100 innovations selected for this year’s global collection are impacting the lives of over 95 million students worldwide. The collection highlights the important role of teachers in education innovation; the continued need for students to develop 21st century skills, including social and emotional learning; an increasing focus on student wellbeing and mental health; and equity in education.

For more information, download the full Global Collection 2023 report.
You can also browse the innovation pages of the selected innovators here.
.

From DSC:
Here’s an excerpt of the email I received today from EducationHQ out of Australia — though I think it applies here in the United States as well:

.

Amplify and value teachers’ voice in education policymaking: researchers — from educationhq.com
Amplify and value teachers’ voice in education policymaking: researchers

Excerpt:

Monash University’s Teachers’ Perceptions of their Work Survey has revealed teachers’ waning satisfaction in their role and highlighted their…

Also from educationhq.com

Teachers changed my life: Trauma-informed education shows kids they matter — from educationhq.com by Beck Thompson
.

Nonprofit Bringing Businesses to Life in the Classroom — to the Tune of $400,000 — from the74million.org by Tim Newcomb
Making candles out of crayons, building birdhouses, fashioning furniture: Real World Scholars has helped 50,000 students become entrepreneurs

Not much entices a second grader to skip out on recess to get back to schoolwork. But excitement around a classroom-run business can do just that, especially when it means creating candles out of crayons and selling them in the local community.

Students design their ideal urban home in My ArchiSchool exhibition — from dezeen.com

Students were able to bring family members to the exhibition. Architectural model by Ethan Chan

Excerpt:

Promotion: fifty-two students presented digital designs and architectural models of their ideal home as part of Hong Kong-based education institute My ArchiSchool’s latest exhibition. As part of the exhibition, My ArchiSchool students were asked to design their ideal home within an urban environment. The exhibition, which took place on 2 October 2022 at the Sky100 on the 100th floor of the International Commerce Centre in Hong Kong, showcased photomontages of digital designs presented alongside physical models.

5 Resources that help students become digital citizens — from rdene915.com by Rachelle Dene Poth

Excerpt:

We need to create opportunities for students to become more digitally aware and literate, and to be responsible when using technology. There are many ways to do this, depending on our content area and grade level. We can model best practices for our students, bring in a specific digital citizenship curriculum to guide them through their learning, or use digital tools and resources available to have students explore and create.

Helping students learn to safely navigate what has become a highly digital world is something that we are all responsible for. Students need to be aware of the impact of their posts online, how to create and manage social accounts and protect their information, and how to properly access and use resources they obtain through technology.

3 Reasons School and District Leaders Should Get on Social Media — from edweek.org by Marina Whiteleather

Excerpt:

School and district leaders can—and should—be using social media in their work.

That’s the message shared by Stephanie McConnell, a superintendent in the Hawkins Independent School District in Texas, and Salome Thomas-El, a K-8 principal in Delaware, during an Education Week K-12 Essentials forum on Oct. 13.

At the event, McConnell and Thomas-El provided insights and advice for school leaders who are hesitant to post on certain social platforms or unsure how to use them.

 

Deloitte State of AI Report 2022 calls out underachievers — from venturebeat.com by Sharon Goldman

Excerpt:

Deloitte released the fifth edition of its State of AI in the Enterprise research report today, which surveyed more than 2,600 global executives on how businesses and industries are deploying and scaling artificial intelligence (AI) projects.

Most notably, the Deloitte report found that while AI continues to move tantalizingly closer to the core of the enterprise – 94% of business leaders agree that AI is critical to success over the next five years – for some, outcomes seem to be lagging.

What is a surprise, she added, is how quickly the AI landscape is changing – to the point that what began as an every-other-year Deloitte report is now created annually. 

From DSC:
I’m reminded of some graphics here…

 

Also relevant/see:

‘State of AI in the Enterprise’ Fifth Edition Uncovers Four Key Actions to Maximize AI Value — from deloitte.com
Research reveals the key actions leaders can take to accelerate AI outcomes

Key takeaways

For Deloitte’s “State of AI in the Enterprise,” Fifth Edition, we surveyed 2,620 global business leaders representing six industry areas and dozens of sectors. Key findings include:

  • Ninety-four percent of business leaders surveyed agree that AI is critical to success over the next five years.
  • Seventy-nine percent of leaders say they have fully deployed three or more AI applications, compared to 62% last year.
  • There was a 29% increase in the number of respondents self-identifying as “underachievers,” suggesting that many organizations are struggling to achieve meaningful AI outcomes.
  • Top challenges associated with scaling according to respondents are managing AI-related risk (50%), lack of executive commitment (50%), lack of maintenance and post launch support (50%).
 

Returning Joy to Teaching & Learning — from gettingsmart.com by Trace Pickering

Key Points

  • Too many school-based reform efforts continue to have educators implicitly standing with the standards against the students.
  • Pivot your perspective for a moment to the opposite.
  • What does a school where its educators stand with the students against the standards look like?

From DSC:
My hunch is that we need to cut — or significantly weaken the ties — between the state legislative bodies out there and our public school systems. We shouldn’t let people who know little to nothing about teaching and learning make decisions about how and what to teach students. Let those on the front lines — ie., the teachers and local school system leaders/staff — collaborate with the community on those items.

 

It’s time to modernize workplace development programs — from chieflearningofficer.com by Jason Mundy

Excerpts:

So, what exactly do employers need to do to improve L&D? Incorporate individualized microlearning into workforce development.

Microlearning-based L&D is used to solve key business objectives and is useful for many types of employee education, such as compliance training, on-the-job skills and administrative responsibilities. Microlearning programs can be tailored to individuals and administered in a way that is not disruptive to employees. Through modern microlearning solutions, it’s also possible to implement scenario-based learning and gamification, both of which increase employee engagement.

From DSC:
After reading this article, some questions come to my mind:

  • Who decides what’s next on the training regime for an employee?
  • Is it a team of people doing that for each position? The employee, the supervisor, two levels up supervisor(s), L&D, other? 
  • And/or is it tapping into streams of content created by former people who have done that exact job?

streams of content are ever flowing by -- we need to tap into them and contribute to them

  • For each position, is it possible to capture a knowledgebase containing which topics, learning modules/courses, blogs, websites, people to follow on social media, or other resources?
  • Is there a community of practice for each position?
  • How and who keeps these knowledgebases pruned and up-to-date? 

Hmmm…thanks for letting me think out loud with you.

 

Higher Education in Motion: The Digital and Cultural Transformations Ahead — from er.educause.edu by John O’Brien

Excerpts (emphasis DSC):

In 2015 when Janet Napolitano, then president of the University of California, responded to what she saw as a steadily growing “chorus of doom” predicting the demise of higher education, she did so with a turn of phrase that captured my imagination and still does. She said that higher education is not in crisis. “Instead, it is in motion, and it always has been.”

A brief insert by DSC:
Yes. In other words, it’s a learning ecosystem — with constant morphing & changing going on.

“We insisted then, and we continue to insist now, that digital transformation amounts to deep and coordinated change that substantially reshapes the operations, strategic directions, and value propositions of colleges and universities and that this change is enabled by culture, workforce, and technology shifts.

The tidal movement to digital transformation is linked to a demonstrably broader recognition of the strategic role and value of technology professionals and leaders on campus, another area of long-standing EDUCAUSE advocacy. For longer than we have talked about digital transformation, we have insisted that technology must be understood as a strategic asset, not a utility, and that senior IT leaders must be part of the campus strategic decision-making. But the idea of a strategic role for technology had disappointing traction among senior campus leaders before 2020.

From DSC:
The Presidents, Provosts, CIO’s, board members, influential faculty members, and other members of institutions’ key leadership positions who didn’t move powerfully forward with online-based learning over the last two+ decades missed the biggest thing to hit societies’ ability to learn in 500+ years — the Internet. Not since the invention of the printing press has learning had such an incredible gust of wind put in its sails. The affordances have been staggering, with millions of people now being educated in much less expensive ways (MOOCs, YouTube, LinkedIn Learning, other). Those who didn’t move forward with online-based learning in the past are currently scrambling to even survive. We’ll see how many close their doors as the number of effective alternatives increases.

Instead of functioning as a one-time fix during the pandemic, technology has become ubiquitous and relied upon to an ever-increasing degree across campus and across the student experience.

Moving forward, best of luck to those organizations who don’t have their CIOs at the decision-making table and reporting directly to the Presidents — and hopefully those CIO’s are innovative and visionary to begin with. Best of luck to those institutions who refuse to look up and around to see that the world has significantly changed from the time they got their degrees.

The current mix of new realities creates an opportunity for an evolution and, ideally, a synchronized reimagination of higher education overall. This will be driven by technology innovation and technology professionals—and will be made even more enduring by a campus culture of care for students, faculty, and staff.

Time will tell if the current cultures within many traditional institutions of higher education will allow them to adapt/change…or not.


Along the lines of transformations in our learning ecosystems, also see:


OPINION: Let’s use the pandemic as a dress-rehearsal for much-needed digital transformation — from hechingerreport.org by Jean-Claude Brizard
Schools must get ready for the next disruption and make high-quality learning available to all

Excerpts:

We should use this moment to catalyze a digital transformation of education that will prepare schools for our uncertain future.

What should come next is an examination of how schools can more deeply and deliberately harness technology to make high-quality learning accessible to every learner, even in the wake of a crisis. That means a digital transformation, with three key levers for change: in the classroom, in schools and at the systems level.

Platforms like these help improve student outcomes by enhancing teachers’ ability to meet individual students’ needs. They also allow learners to master new skills at their own pace, in their own way.

As Digital Transformation in Schools Continues, the Need for Enterprising IT Leaders Grows — from edtechmagazine.com by Ryan Petersen

K-12 IT leaders move beyond silos to make a meaningful impact inside and outside their schools.According to Korn Ferry’s research on enterprise leadership, “Enterprise leaders envision and grow; scale and create. They go beyond by going across the enterprise, optimizing the whole organization and its entire ecosystem by leading outside what they can control. These are leaders who see their role as being a participant in diverse and dynamic communities.”

 

 

2022 EDUCAUSE Horizon Action Plan: Hybrid Learning — from library.educause.edu

Excerpts:

Building on the trends, technologies, and practices described in the 2022 Horizon Report: Teaching and Learning Edition, the panel crafted its vision of the future along with practical action items the teaching and learning community can employ to make this future a reality. Any stakeholder in higher education who teaches in or supports hybrid learning modalities will find this report helpful in preparing for the future of hybrid learning. The future we want is within reach, but only if we work together.

Asked to describe the goals and elements of hybrid learning that they would like to see 10 years from now, panelists collaboratively constructed their preferred future for institutions, students, instructors, and staff.

Institutions

  • Higher education is available on demand.
  • Learning is not measured by seat time.
  • Collaboration across institutions facilitates advancement.
  • College and university campuses are not the sole locations for learning spaces.

Students, Instructors, and Staff

  • Everything is hybrid.
  • Student equity is centered in all modalities.
  • Professional development is ongoing, integrated, and valued.
 

From DSC:
Many of the items below are from Laurence Colletti’s posting, Clio Cloud Conference – The Big Return


Clio Cloud 2022: Innovation in the Courts with Judge Schlegel — from legaltalknetwork.com by Laurence Colletti and Judge Scott Schlegel

Episode notes:

The pandemic was a driver for change in justice systems around the globe, but one court’s innovative and inexpensive approach is worth a closer look. Judge Scott Schlegel manages what may be one of the most advanced courts in the United States for delivering justice online. Tune in for his tips on how any jurisdiction in the country can modernize its justice system for under a thousand dollars. Go to https://www.onlinejudge.us/ for all of Judge Schlegel’s recommendations.

Clio Cloud 2022: The Benefits of a Legal Blog — from legaltalknetwork.com by Laurence Colletti and Teresa Matich, Kevin O’Keefe, and Iffy Ibekwe
Legal blog posts are great tools for building relationships with potential clients because they build trust, credibility, and allow you to create a personal connection with your clients.

LawNext Podcast: What Is Justice Tech? A Conversation with Maya Markovich — from lawnext.com by

Excerpt:

An increasing number of startups are defining themselves not as legal tech, but as justice tech. So what, exactly, is justice tech, who are some of the companies that represent it, and what is the business opportunity they present for potential investors? Our guest this week is Maya Markovich, executive director of the Justice Technology Association, an organization formed earlier this year to support companies in the justice tech sector.

Clio Cloud 2022: Insights from Clio’s 2022 Legal Trends Report — from legaltalknetwork.com by Laurence Colletti, Joshua Lenon, and Rio Peterson
Amid Inflation, Rising Interest Rates, and Volatile Employment Markets, Clio takes a look at How Global Trends have Impacted Business and Productivity among law firms.

Clio Cloud 2022: What Lies Ahead for Legal with Jack Newton — from legaltalknetwork.com by Laurence Colletti and Jack Newton

Episode notes:

The world of lawyering has surged in spite of the pandemic, but new adversity looms. Fears over inflation, war, hiring markets, and a recession have left many attorneys wondering how to prepare for the coming months. Jack Newton discusses the concept of anti-fragility and its place as a mental model for law firms as they face an uncertain future. Jack outlines how deliberate preparation can help your law firm thrive in the midst of opposition.

Jack Newton is CEO and co-founder of Clio.

Clio Cloud 2022: How Content Creation Can Grow Your Law Firm — from legaltalknetwork.com by Laurence Colletti

 


Also related, see:

Virtual Courts Are Not Going Away — from news.bloomberglaw.com by Jon David Kelley
As the pandemic winds down, courts are shifting to a hybrid approach that incorporates remote with live proceedings. Jon David Kelley of Kirkland says virtual courts can expand access to justice, but care should be taken to maintain credible representation.


 

 

Nikolas Badminton – Elevate Festival 2022 Keynote — futurist.com by Nikolas Badminton

Excerpts/words/phrases:

  • Shifting from “What is?” to “What if? (i.e., paradigm shifts)
  • Megatrends
  • Potential futures
  • Signals of change
  • Scenarios
  • Trajectories
  • Think about the good as well as the bad
  • Telling stories
  • Black swans/elephants
  • Making your organization more profitable and resilient

 

 

5 college recruiting lessons from a mom and a marketer — from highereddive.com by Denise Lamphier
The executive director of communications and marketing at Central College, in Iowa, shares what she learned from her own child’s college search.

Excerpt:

Just after that first piece arrived, I proposed the idea to E.J. to collaborate on a four-year project together, reviewing admission materials. As part of the project, he wrote some journal entries about the mailings. Then I took the pieces to my office at Central and taped them on the wall. This allowed my team to see the four-year progression of materials that a high school student receives from colleges. E.J. also offered me access to his school email account so I could read all the college emails he amassed.

The following statistics reflect his recruitment experience in a numbers nutshell:

One student. Four years. Ninety different colleges and universities. A total of 5,228 emails. Four military recruitment brochures, 23 handwritten notes, 302 postcards, and 162 viewbooks and pamphlets mailed alone. That’s in addition to 130 letters, often including viewbooks, applications or other materials. And we mustn’t forget one yellow flying disc mailed as an irregular parcel.

All to elicit one decision.


Addendum on 10/10/22:

  • 4 more insights from a mom and a marketer — from highereddive.com by Denise Lamphier
    The executive director of communications and marketing at Central College, in Iowa, shares more of what she learned from her child’s college search.

 

The real strength of weak ties — from news.stanford.edu; with thanks to Roberto Ferraro for this resource
A team of Stanford, MIT, and Harvard scientists finds “weaker ties” are more beneficial for job seekers on LinkedIn.

Excerpt:

A team of researchers from Stanford, MIT, Harvard, and LinkedIn recently conducted the largest experimental study to date on the impact of digital job sites on the labor market and found that weaker social connections have a greater beneficial effect on job mobility than stronger ties.

“A practical implication of the research is that it’s helpful to reach out to people beyond your immediate friends and colleagues when looking for a new job,” explained Erik Brynjolfsson, who is the Jerry Yang and Akiko Yamazaki Professor at Stanford University. “People with whom you have weaker ties are more likely to have information or connections that are useful and relevant.”

 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian