ASU partners with Pearson to expand online learning services — from
Partnership will enhance the online student experience and reach new students

Arizona State University (ASU) and Pearson today announced an innovative partnership to develop new technology and management services to support ASU’s online students. The agreement will equip ASU with various capabilities designed to maximize learning outcomes through student engagement and retention, as well as increase overall course offerings. It will enable the university to reach potential students around the country who are not served by brick and mortar or other online institutions.

“When it comes to learning online, there is a direct correlation between quality services and student success,” said Philip Regier, Executive Vice Provost and Dean of ASU Online. “The reality is that learning online is very demanding and most students already have family and work responsibilities. The more support they receive, the better their learning outcomes and overall experience will be.”

From DSC:
With the pace of technological innovation and the costs involved in creating engaging, interactive, multimedia-based materials, it seems that such pooling of resources is wise, efficient. That is why I’m a fan of
consortiums and pooling resources. This type of thing also quickly brings TEAMS of people together.

How long does it take to create learning? (2010 Research) — from by Bryan Chapman

Bryan Chapman reports on the number of hours it takes to create 1 hour of ____ training


From DSC:
I have it that in the near future, it will take a team of specialists to create and deliver effective learning content that is able to engage folks (the for-profits, as we’ve seen, are already doing this).  No doubt this takes time and money. That is why, within the world of higher ed, I think the use of pooling resources and expanding the use of consortiums might take off;  and/or…perhaps there will be more contributions to open source alternatives…I’m not sure. But this report shows that it can take a significant amount of time to create the content.

The important thing for the online world here is to leverage these efforts again and again and again. The more times that a course is used/taken, the ROI goes up and the cost per delivery goes down.

Michigan colleges create joint film institute — Kim Kozlowski / The Detroit News
Wayne State, U-M, Michigan State to launch 8-week summer program

Nearly two dozen students gathered Wednesday to participate in a program with the state’s three largest universities to drive Michigan’s burgeoning film industry, Gov. Jennifer Granholm announced.

The 2010 Creative Film Alliance Summer Institute launched on Gull Lake in Kalamazoo County’s Ross Township, with nearly two dozen students from Wayne State University, Michigan State University and University of Michigan.

During the eight-week course, the students will take film classes at all of the universities, shoot a 20-minute film and network with Hollywood professionals, including producer Bill Mechanic, a 1972 MSU alum and head of a production company that produced this year’s Academy Awards show.

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Remember what I said earlier about consortiums/pooling resources?
Here’s a great example of that.

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Academia in crisis: Brian Hawkins addresses the NITLE Summit — NITLE

Brian L. Hawkins, co-founder of the Frye Institute and the first president of EDUCAUSE, gave an impassioned presentation “The Information Resource Professional: Transformation, Tradition & Trajectory” to an engaged group of conference participants at last week’s NITLE Summit. He didn’t mince words: along with institutions in all other sectors of higher education, it is urgent that liberal arts colleges invent a new future together, working in true collaboration. Today’s uniquely dire higher education fiscal environment is the driver. Institutional failures to respond energetically will result in the institution not surviving (emphasis DSC).

Hawkins based his argument both on astute observation of the current milieu and on comparisons with the trajectory of events and transformations he observed during his long and distinguished career of higher education leadership (emphasis DSC). Drawing on his experience in roles ranging from Senior Vice President at Brown University to EDUCAUSE leader, and returning to his many publications and presentations throughout that career, Hawkins delineated the current environment, painting an unsettling picture: (emphasis DSC — which I call a game-changing environment).

  • Public universities, once beneficiaries of state support, are increasingly competing for the same tuition and research dollars as private institution, and public funding will likely not return.
  • Private institutions are increasingly priced beyond the means of most American families.
  • Smaller colleges and universities are as vulnerable to environmental stresses as fish in small fish tanks.
  • The model of higher education that has obtained in the US for 130 years “is broken and no longer works.”
  • Because of the constrained fiscal environment we face as a nation, higher education has lost its traditional political supporters in state and federal government. Politically “we have no allies.”
  • Institutions are dysfunctional: resistant to change, slow to adapt, fraught with “special interests,” mistaken that they can return to an earlier time, and precluded by their own distinguished and complex histories from “starting over.”
  • The “new normal,” as delineated by Cornell president David Skorton in the opening plenary (PDF) at  NAICU’s annual meeting this part January, includes lost endowment income, weakened fund raising, smaller tuition increases, and more demands for financial aid, moving forward.
  • The global information environment has evolved far more quickly than have educational institutions.

…Hawkins further stressed the critical importance of genuinely transformative inter-institutional collaborations: “We have to stop thinking of collaboration as an avocational approach…… it is the only means of competitive survival.”

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States Rush to Join Testing Consortia — From by Stephen Sawchuk
Many sign on to boost chances for Race to the Top funding.

Spurred by the promise of $350 million in Race to the Top money for improved tests—as well as an opportunity to strengthen bids for part of the federal fund’s larger $4 billion pot—states are scrambling to join consortia to develop common assessments.
Six state consortia are now engaged in discussions about common tests, and the multiple partnerships may put to rest for now speculation that federal support inevitably will lead to a single national set of exams.

Since it isn’t yet clear what the U.S. Department of Education expects to see from the consortia, most states have hedged their bets by signing up for more than one partnership. For the most part, their signatures on the “memorandums of understanding” listing the principles of each consortium are nonbinding.

The situation remains fluid, with the number of states involved in each consortium changing almost daily.

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