Ed tech leaders just predicted these 3 trends will unfold in higher education — from highereddive.com by Natalie Schwartz
Ed tech leaders gathered in New York on Thursday to discuss trends in the sector. Here’s what they had to say.

Excerpt:

NEW YORK — It’s a brutal moment for ed tech companies.

The stock market has been battered over the past few months, and the technology sector has been particularly hard hit. Meanwhile, colleges are experiencing enrollment declines at the same time their coronavirus relief funds are drying up, potentially constraining how much they can spend with vendors.

Still, ed tech CEOs and investors remained bullish about their own sector’s future during a conference in New York on Thursday held by HolonIQ, a market analysis firm. Here are three trends they say are coming down the pike.

 

From DSC:
The other day, I saw an article that said that there’s no such thing as 21st-century skills. I wasn’t able to access the whole article, so I can’t comment fully on it. But I disagree that no specific skills are needed for the 21st century.

When we’re moving at very fast speeds and technological changes — and their ripple effects — seem like they are on an exponential trajectory, I think that there’s one skill that stands out as being very important in the 21st century. And that is the ability to scan the landscapes to be able to read “early signals” — to practice some futurism is very helpful these days. It keeps one — and one’s organization — from being broadsided.

This is also the case as the ripple effects continue to move out from the occurrence of Covid19. 


Addendum on 9/28/22:

Megatrends | September 25, 2022 — by Michael Moe, Tim Juang, Owen Ritz, & Kit Royce

“The trend is your friend.” – Martin Zweig

“Follow the trend lines, not the headlines.” – Bill Clinton

“In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” – Coco Chanel

“I don’t set the trends. I just find out what they are and exploit them.” – Dick Clark

Megatrends are powerful technological, economic, and social forces that develop from a groundswell (early adoption), move into the mainstream (mass market), and disrupt the status quo (mature market), driving change, productivity, and ultimately growth opportunities for companies, industries, and entire economies.


 

What’s next for online education? — from educationalist.substack.com by Alexandra Mihai

Excerpt:

An ecosystem not a dichotomy
As you’re hopefully already getting from my thoughts so far, I personally see our options for quality education in the future more like an ecosystem and not a series of mutually exclusive paths. It’s time to discard- or at least question-the “online vs. in person” dichotomy, almost always unfavourable to online education. It’s time to think in a more nuanced way about this. And, yes, you’ve guessed, more nuanced is always more difficult. Seeing the shades of grey requires a critical lens that we don’t need to see black and white.

The extent to which online education will be used in the future does not depend only on people (micro level), it depends on institutions (meso level) and policies (macro level).

The learning ecosystem, in my view:

  • includes various modalities used in a complementary way and as a continuum;
  • serves a multitude of audiences, at different stages of learning, with different aims and degrees of engagement;
  • requires comprehensive and interconnected support structures at institutional level, for students and faculty.
 

From DSC:
I signed up to receive some items from Outlier.org. Here’s one of the emails that I recently received. It seems to me that this type of thing is going to be hard to compete against:

  • Professionally-done content
  • Created by teams of specialists, including game designers
  • Hand-picked professors/SME’s — from all over the world
  • Evidence-based learning tools

Outlier dot org could be tough to compete against -- professional-executed content creation and delivery

 

To Improve Outcomes for Students, We Must Improve Support for Faculty — from campustechnology.com by Dr. David Wiley
The doctoral programs that prepare faculty for their positions often fail to train them on effective teaching practices. We owe it to our students to provide faculty with the professional development they need to help learners realize their full potential.

Excerpts:

Why do we allow so much student potential to go unrealized? Why are well-researched, highly effective teaching practices not used more widely?

The doctoral programs that are supposed to prepare them to become faculty in physics, philosophy, and other disciplines don’t require them to take a single course in effective teaching practices. 

The entire faculty preparation enterprise seems to be caught in a loop, unintentionally but consistently passing on an unawareness that some teaching practices are significantly more effective than others. How do we break this cycle and help students realize their full potential as learners?

From DSC:
First of all, I greatly appreciate the work of Dr. David Wiley. His career has been dedicated to teaching and learning, open educational resources, and more. I also appreciate and agree with what David is saying here — i.e., that professors need to be taught how to teach as well as what we know about how people learn at this point in time. 

For years now, I’ve been (unpleasantly) amazed that we hire and pay our professors primarily for their research capabilities — vs. their teaching competence. At the same time, we continually increase the cost of tuition, books, and other fees. Students have the right to let their feet do the walking. As the alternatives to traditional institutions of higher education increase, I’m quite sure that we’ll see that happen more and more.

While I think that training faculty members about effective teaching practices is highly beneficial, I also think that TEAM-BASED content creation and delivery will deliver the best learning experiences that we can provide. I say this because multiple disciplines and specialists are involved, such as:

  • Subject Matter Experts (i.e., faculty members)
  • Instructional Designers
  • Graphic Designers
  • Web Designers
  • Learning Scientists; Cognitive Learning Researchers
  • Audio/Video Specialists  and Learning Space Designers/Architects
  • CMS/LMS Administrators
  • Programmers
  • Multimedia Artists who are skilled in working with digital audio and digital video
  • Accessibility Specialists
  • Librarians
  • Illustrators and Animators
  • and more

The point here is that one person can’t do it all — especially now that the expectation is that courses should be offered in a hybrid format or in an online-based format. For a solid example of the power of team-based content creation/delivery, see this posting.

One last thought/question here though. Once a professor is teaching, are they open to working with and learning from the Instructional Designers, Learning Scientists, and/or others from the Teaching & Learning Centers that do exist on their campus? Or do they, like many faculty members, think that such people are irrelevant because they aren’t faculty members themselves? Oftentimes, faculty members look to each other and don’t really care what support is offered (unless they need help with some of the technology.)


Also relevant/see:


 

8 big questions as colleges start fall 2022 — from highereddive.com by Rick Seltzer
Will higher ed’s financial picture clear? Can campuses innovate? Is a new generation of presidents ready to rise to the moment?

Excerpt:

Can colleges innovate?
Observers wonder whether the higher education sector is ready to make the changes necessary to meet the moment, like becoming more flexible, serving a wider range of students and containing costs. Higher ed leaders have been discussing certain priorities for years amid projections of diversifying student bodies, financial crunches and public policy changes.

From DSC:
I excerpted an item re: innovation because I think institutions of traditional higher education will have to make some significant changes to turn (the negative tide of) the public’s perception of the value of a college degree. No more playing around at the edges — significant value/ROI must be delivered and proved.

A quick way to accomplish this would be to lift up the place of adjunct faculty members at one’s institution:

  • Give them more say, voice, and control — especially in the area of which topics/courses should be offered in the curricula out there
  • Give them more input into faculty governance types of issues 
  • Pay them much more appropriately while granting them healthcare and retirement kinds of benefits

I say this because adjunct faculty members are often out there in the real world, actually doing the kinds of things in their daily jobs that they’re teaching about. They’re able to regularly pulse-check their industries and they can better see what’s needed in the marketplace. They could help traditional institutions of higher education be much more responsive.

But because higher education has been treating its adjunct faculty members so poorly (at least in recent years), I’m not as hopeful in this regard as I’d like to be.

Another option would be to have faculty members spend much more time in the workplace — to experience which topics, content, and skills are required. But that’s tough to do when their job plates are often already so full that they’re overflowing.

Bottom line: It’s time for change. It’s time to become much more responsive — course-offering-wise.

 

What if smart TVs’ new killer app was a next-generation learning-related platform? [Christian]

TV makers are looking beyond streaming to stay relevant — from protocol.com by Janko Roettgers and Nick Statt

A smart TV's main menu listing what's available -- application wise

Excerpts:

The search for TV’s next killer app
TV makers have some reason to celebrate these days: Streaming has officially surpassed cable and broadcast as the most popular form of TV consumption; smart TVs are increasingly replacing external streaming devices; and the makers of these TVs have largely figured out how to turn those one-time purchases into recurring revenue streams, thanks to ad-supported services.

What TV makers need is a new killer app. Consumer electronics companies have for some time toyed with the idea of using TV for all kinds of additional purposes, including gaming, smart home functionality and fitness. Ad-supported video took priority over those use cases over the past few years, but now, TV brands need new ways to differentiate their devices.

Turning the TV into the most useful screen in the house holds a lot of promise for the industry. To truly embrace this trend, TV makers might have to take some bold bets and be willing to push the envelope on what’s possible in the living room.

 


From DSC:
What if smart TVs’ new killer app was a next-generation learning-related platform? Could smart TVs deliver more blended/hybrid learning? Hyflex-based learning?
.

The Living [Class] Room -- by Daniel Christian -- July 2012 -- a second device used in conjunction with a Smart/Connected TV

.

Or what if smart TVs had to do with delivering telehealth-based apps? Or telelegal/virtual courts-based apps?


 

No one in higher ed is fixing this overlooked crisis for instructors — from highereddive.com by Nina Huntemann
Adjunct faculty members are struggling. It’s time to treat them like the valuable contributors they are, writes Chegg’s chief academic officer.

Excerpt:

In higher ed, it is a much-discussed but little addressed fact that many higher-education faculty in the U.S. are paid below the poverty line. Approximately one-fourth of the instructors teaching at U.S. colleges and universities are earning less than $25,000 per year, though the median household income in our country is approximately $67,000, according to 2020 data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Those outside the higher ed space often assume most faculty members in the U.S. are tenured or on a tenure track, with “jobs for life” and a comfortable income; however, this is far from reality. The fact is that contingent faculty, those who hold non-tenure-track positions and often work on annual or semester-by-semester contracts, comprise 75% of all faculty positions, according to the American Federation of Teachers.

 

From DSC:
Below are some reflections based on an article entitled, Understanding learning transfer through Archwell Academies. It’s from chieflearningofficer.com and was written by Erin Donovan and Keith Keating.

Excerpt:

To capitalize on learning transfer and extend learning beyond traditional training periods, practitioners have established capability academies. According to Josh Bersin, capability academies are the evolution of traditional training and self-directed learning. Bersin posited:

Capability academies are business-driven, collaborative learning environments that facilitate learning retention. . . . Going beyond rote lessons, capability academies help companies prepare for transformation by helping employees develop complex skills and providing guidance on how to apply them in the context of the business.

The core concept of capability academies rests on the importance of collaboration between the trainers and the business. The intention is to provide learners with practice of conceptual understanding and comparative scenarios in the context and environment where they will ultimately apply their skills. Capability academies focus on providing training distinctly aligning with learners’ job responsibilities.

From DSC:
First of all, I have a lot of respect for the people that this article mentions, such as Josh Bersin and Will Thalheimer. So this article caught me eye.

It seems to me that the corporate world is asking for institutions of traditional higher education to deliver such “capability academies.” But that makes me wonder, could this even be done? Surely there aren’t enough resources to develop/deliver/maintain so many environments and contexts, right? It took Archwell, a global mortgage services outsourcing provider, an entire year to systematically design and develop such customized capability academies — just for their clients’ businesses. 

The article goes on:

The core concept of capability academies rests on the importance of collaboration between the trainers and the business. The intention is to provide learners with practice of conceptual understanding and comparative scenarios in the context and environment where they will ultimately apply their skills. Capability academies focus on providing training distinctly aligning with learners’ job responsibilities.

Context. Skills. Acquiring knowledge. Being able to apply that knowledge in a particular environment. Wow…that’s a lot to ask institutions of traditional higher education to deliver. And given the current setup, it’s simply not going to happen. Faculty members’ plates are already jammed-packed. They don’t have time to go out and collaborate with each business in their area (even with more sabbaticals…I don’t see it happening).

I’m sure many at community colleges could chime in here and would likely say that that’s exactly what they are doing. But I highly doubt that they are constantly delivering this type of customized offering for all of the businesses in each major city in their area.

I can hear those in corporate training programs saying that that’s what they are doing for their own business. But they don’t provide it for other businesses in their area.

So, what would it take for higher education to develop/offer such “capability academies?” Is it even possible?

We continue to struggle to design the ultimate learning ecosystem(s) — one(s) whereby we can provide personalized learning experiences for each person and business. We need to continue to practice design thinking here, as we seek to provide valuable, relevant/up-to-date, and cradle-to-grave learning experiences.

The problem is, the pace of change has changed. Institutions of traditional higher education can’t keep up. And frankly, neither can most businesses out there.

I keep wondering if a next-generation learning platform — backed up by AI but delivered with human expertise — will play a role in the future. The platform would offer products and services from teams of individuals — and/or from communities of practices — who can provide customized, up-to-date training materials and the learning transfers that this article discusses.

But such a platform would have to offer socially-based learning experiences and opportunities for accountability. Specific learning goals and learning cohorts help keep one on track and moving forward.

 

Teens Have Changed Their Higher Ed Plans — Survey Shows They May Never Go Back — from the74million.org by John Kristof & Colyn Ritter
Kristof & Ritter: COVID-19 forced HS students to re-evaluate their learning plans. If colleges want enrollment to recover, they must adapt

Excerpt:

Each of the nearly 4 million students who graduated high school this spring faces major decisions this summer. Do they want to pursue further education? If so, what do they want to study and where? How will they afford it? Will they begin working immediately? If so, are they moving out of their family home? Are they prepared for the hassles of adulthood?

According to a recent survey we at EdChoice conducted in conjunction with Morning Consult, teenagers are embracing their agency in an increasingly broad array of choices. What they told us might worry institutions of higher education — because the next generation appears less interested in the traditional college pipeline.

 

Future of Higher Education: Fully Shift to Hybrid Model by 2025 — from fierceeducation.com by Susan Fourtané, with thanks to Ray Schroeder for this resource out on LinkedIn

Excerpt:

The full shift to a blended teaching and learning model for higher education will become effective by 2025, according to a new report.

The pandemic acted as a catalyst to change the higher education landscape accelerating online learning adoption. Chief Online Officers (COOs) who took part in the CHLOE 7: Tracking Online Learning from Mainstream Acceptance to Universal Adoption, The Changing Landscape of Online Education report indicated that student interest in online learning has increased substantially in the past two years. The majority of COOs predict that is a trend that will continue to grow in the next several years.

 

Fluid students flowing in and out of education are higher ed’s future. Here’s how colleges must adapt. — from highereddive.com by Anne Khademian
The Universities at Shady Grove’s executive director adapts the fluid fan idea reshaping the business of sports, shedding light on higher ed’s future.

We need less tweaking and more rethinking of how to deliver greater access, affordability and equity in higher education, and we must do it at scale. We need a new paradigm for the majority of students in higher education today that commits to meaningful employment and sustainable-wage careers upon completion of a degree or credential.

The challenge is the same for the business of higher education in serving future, more fluid students — and today’s nontraditional students. Many need to flow in and out of jobs and education, rather than pursue a degree in two or four years. Increasingly, they will seek to direct their educational experience toward personalized career opportunities, while stacking and banking credentials and experience into degrees.

From DSC:
Coming in and going out of “higher education” throughout one’s career and beyond…constant changes…morphing…hmm…sounds like a lifelong learning ecosystem to me.

#learningecosystems #learningfromthelivingclassroom
#highereducation #change #lifelonglearning

75% of master’s programs with high debt and low earnings are at private nonprofits — from highereddive.com by Lilah Burke
Urban Institute report undermines narrative that programs with poor student outcomes are all at for-profit colleges and in the humanities.

Although private nonprofit institutions accounted for 44% of all master’s programs in the data, they made up 75% of programs with high debt and low earnings.

Tuition increases, lower capital spending likely in store for higher ed as inflation persists, Fitch says — from highereddive.com by Rick Seltzer

The next inflation-driven worry: Rising college tuition — from washingtonpost.com by Nick Anderson and Danielle Douglas-Gabriel
Families are concerned about affordability of higher education

Spiraling rents are wreaking havoc on college students seeking housing for the fall — from by Jon Marcus
Big hikes are forcing students deeper into debt, risk pushing more out of school altogether

From DSC:
From someone who is paying for rent for a college student — along with tuition, books, fees, etc. —  this has direct application to our household. If there isn’t a perfect storm developing in higher ed, then I don’t know what that phrase means.

#costofhighereducation #inflation

HBCUs see a historic jump in enrollments — from npr.org with Michel Martin; with thanks to Marcela Rodrigues-Sherley and Julia Piper from The Chronicle for the resource

Also from that same newsletter:

What would Harvard University’s ranking be if the only criteria considered was economic mobility? According to The Washington Post, it would be 847th out of 1,320. First place would go to California State University at Los Angeles.

A New Vision for the Future of Higher Education: Prioritizing Engagement and Alignment — from moderncampus.com with Amrit Ahluwalia and Brian Kibby

Excerpt:

Change is a constant in higher ed, just as it is in the labor market. Staying up to date and flexible is more important than ever for colleges and universities, and through the pandemic, many relied on their continuing and workforce education divisions to support their agility. In fact, 56% of higher ed leaders said the role of their CE units expanded through the pandemic. 

The pandemic led to some of the biggest innovations in continuing ed in recent memory.  

Students Lobby Lawmakers to Improve College Experience for Neurodiverse Learners — from edsurge.com by Daniel Lempres

Excerpt:

Lobbying for more support for students with learning disabilities in higher education, the students called for increased funding for the National Center for Special Education Research and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA Act) — legislation which requires that children with disabilities be given a free and appropriate public education, and makes it possible for states and local educational agencies to provide federal funds to make sure that happens. They also encouraged lawmakers to pass the RISE Act, a bill designed to better support neurodiverse students in higher education.

What a Homework Help Site’s Move to Host Open Educational Resources Could Mean — from edsurge.com by Daniel Mollenkamp

How can leaders bridge the gap between higher ed and employers? — from highereddive.com by Lilah Burke

Dive Brief:

  • Partnerships between higher education institutions and employers can be difficult to create, often because of misalignment between the cultures, structures and values of the two groups, according to a July report from California Competes, a nonprofit policy organization focused on higher education.
  • Higher ed leaders could improve employer relations by making industry engagement an expected responsibility of both faculty and staff, said the report, which drew from 28 interviews with people at colleges and employers.
  • Robust employer engagement can strengthen enrollment and job outcomes for students, the authors argued, while also benefiting state and local economies.

Price-fixing lawsuit against 568 Group of top-ranked universities can continue, judge rules — from highereddive.com by Rick Seltzer

Termination of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools as an ED Recognized Accrediting Agency — from blog.ed.gov

 

What a New Strategy at 2U Means for the Future of Online Higher Education — from edsurge.com by Phil Hill

Excerpt:

The acceleration is that 2U is going all in on the education platform strategy that started with the company’s acquisition of edX last year. The idea at the time was to rely on a flywheel effect, where edX can upsell to its tens of millions of registered learners taking free or low-cost online courses known as MOOCs, thus driving down the marketing costs required for the OPM business, while offering a spectrum of options—from free MOOCs to stackable certificates, to bootcamps and short courses, all the way to full degrees. The flywheel aspect is that the more the strategy succeeds, the more revenue is made by institutional partners and by the company, leading to more free courses and registered learners. It’s a self-reinforcing strategy that is the same one followed by Coursera.
.

 

How higher education lost its shine — from hechingerreport.org by Jon Marcus
Americans are rejecting college in record numbers, but the reasons may not be what you think

Excerpt:

“With the exception of wartime, the United States has never been through a period of declining educational attainment like this,” said Michael Hicks, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at Ball State University’s Miller College of Business.

There has been a significant and steady drop nationwide in the proportion of high school graduates enrolling in college in the fall after they finish high school — from a high of 70 percent in 2016 to 63 percent in 2020, the most recent year for which the figure is available, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Myriad focus groups and public opinion surveys point to other reasons for the dramatic downward trend. These include widespread and fast-growing skepticism about the value of a degree, impatience with the time it takes to get one and costs that have finally exceeded many people’s ability or willingness to pay.

 


From DSC:
This again reminds me of my concerns captured in this graphic I created with Mr. Yohan Na back in 2009:
.


 

Online Learning, From the Margins to the Center — from insidehighered.com by Ray Schroeder
Online learning has evolved over the past 25 years from a niche position on the margins of higher ed to the leading driver of growth in enrollment and innovation.

Excerpt:

Online learning has grown from a marginal niche of higher ed to the largest provider of postsecondary learning in the world. We are now on the cusp of yet another technological evolution in the delivery of online learning. The advent of the metaverse in higher education is closer than many casual observers may think. By 2025, we will begin to see significant numbers of offerings using avatars and immersive technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality and extended reality engaging learners at a distance.

Do you have developmental immersion laboratories for your faculty and staff to prepare for 2025? Who at your university is advocating for the integration of VR, AR and XR into online delivery? Are you already collaborating with industry and business in developing the most effective and relevant technology-enhanced online programs that will meet their needs? Those who lead in these ventures will set the standards and gain the recruiting advantage in higher education.

 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian