Education is about to radically change: AI for the masses — from gettingsmart.com by Nate McClennen and Rachelle Dené Poth

Key Points:

  • AI already does and will continue to impact education – along with every other sector.
  • Innovative education leaders have an opportunity to build the foundation for the most personalized learning system we have ever seen.

Action

Education leaders need to consider these possible futures now. There is no doubt that K-12 and higher ed learners will be using these tools immediately. It is not a question of preventing “AI plagiarism” (if such a thing could exist), but a question of how to modify teaching to take advantage of these new tools.

From DSC:
They go on to list some solid ideas and experiments to try out — both for students and for teachers. Thanks Nate and Rachelle!


Also from Rachelle, see:


 

From DSC:
For those who dog the “doomsayers” of higher ed…

  • You need to realize many “doomsayers” are trying to get traditional institutions of higher education to change, experiment, lower their price tags, collaborate with K12 and/or with the corporate/vocational realms, and to innovate
  • While many of those same institutions haven’t closed (at least not yet), there are many examples of budget cuts, downsizing, layoffs, early retirements, etc.
  • Many of those same institutions are not the same as they were 20-30 years ago — not even close. This is becoming especially true for liberal arts colleges.

Here’s one example that made me post this reflection:

Why some rural universities are dropping dozens of programs — from npr.org by Ason Fuller, Lee Hale, and Sarah McCammon

NPR’s Sarah McCammon talks with Hechinger Report Author Jon Marcus about the financial woes of rural universities and why some are dropping dozens of programs.

Excerpt:

Many colleges and universities in rural America are slashing budgets as enrollment numbers continue to dwindle. And often, the first things to be cut are humanities programs like history and English. It’s forcing some students to consider transferring to other schools or leaving higher education altogether. Jon Marcus has been covering this erosion of funding at rural universities and its domino effects with The Hechinger Report, and he joins us now. Welcome to the program.

 
Imagine my delight when co-founder of Coursera Daphne Koehler came into my office in 2012 to explain the radical concept behind her new business. What if you could Partner with the World’s best universities and professors to provide FREE online courses? Like other successful FREEMIUM models, you monetize the platform downstream by creating massive network effects and convert a small percentage to paying customers (we had invested in other successful FREEMIUM models such as Facebook, Twitter, Spotify and Snap, so why wouldn’t that work here?)

Today, over 113 million learners from around the world access the platform to gain knowledge, to earn certificates and get diplomas from the top universities.

The Coursera ride has been amazing for most of the past decade, with over 100 million students, 200 universities and 5000 courses on the platform. And while the vast majority of the students on Coursera don’t pay a dime, the company has built a business with over $500 million in revenue and nearly a $2 billion market cap today.

Estimates are for the company to do $520 million in revenue in 2022, up from $415 million in 2021 and estimated $623 million in 2023. Coursera is losing money currently but has $424 million in cash and could turn profitable if it prioritized that and sells at 1.3x 2023 sales.

 

Skills, Skills, Skills Now is the time. — from by Katelyn Donnelly and Eric Scott Lavin
Skills matter more than ever.

Excerpt:

For years, the importance of building demonstrable skills has been growing. The research is clear: skills acquired through work experience increase lifetime earnings. Yet, a massive shift in how learners, educators, and employers think about skills is just beginning.

Three subtrends set the stage for a massive inflection point in how we think about skills…

Learning will be the only constant throughout a career.  Success in the modern workforce is learning experiences to build skills, and the best way to build skills is to do real-world projects.

Below is a sampling of organizations and companies pushing the boundaries. Some of these are established players with mature businesses and tested business models.

Also relevant/see:

The Job Skills of 2023 — from Coursera

The job skills of 2023 -- from Coursera

Excerpt from the Executive Summary Section

  1. The fastest-growing skills are digital skills
    The top ten overall fastest-growing skills are digital skills. The ongoing evolution of technology means employers are regularly seeking new digital competencies from potential hires while also reskilling existing workers.
  2. The fastest-growing digital skills are changing more significantly than the fastest-growing human skills
    The top ten digital skills vary significantly from last year—only two have carried over year-on-year: data visualization and user experience. The human skills in demand remain steadier, suggesting an evergreen demand for skills like change management and communication.

The job skills of 2023 -- from Coursera

 
  • From DSC:
    I continue to think about the idea of wiping the slate completely clean. If we were to design a lifelong learning ecosystem, what would it look like? How could we apply Design Thinking to this new slate/canvas?

Perhaps we could start by purposefully creating more pathways to weave in and out of the various siloes — and then come back into the “silos” with new ideas, knowledge, and experiences:

  • PreK-12
  • Higher education
  • Vocational programs
  • Business and the corporate world
  • Government
  • Communities of practice
  • Other

Integrate apprenticeships, jobs, sabbaticals, rest, purpose, passions, intrinsic motivations, other into this lifelong learning ecosystem. Take one’s new learning back to one’s former silo(s) and improve things therein. Such a design would help keep curricula and learning/training environments up-to-date and relevant.

It would also allow people more pathways through their careers — and to keep learning while doing real-world projects. It would help people — and institutions— grow in many ways.

 

The Job: Online Certifications #85? DEC 1, 2022 — from getrevue.co by Paul Fain
Growing interest in online training for medical certifications and a private university that’s offering credit for MedCerts and other microcredentials.

Excerpt:

‘Train and Hire’ in Healthcare
The nation’s healthcare system continues to strain amid a severe staffing crisis. And the mounting desperation is prodding some employers to get more creative about how they hire, train, and retain healthcare workers.

MedCerts has seen growing demand for its online certification training, with strong interest in the 28-week medical assistant and 12-week phlebotomy technician programs.

The company has enrolled 55K students and roughly doubled its offerings during the last two years. Its fastest-growing segment is the train-and-hire model, where employers cover the full tuition and training costs for students.

“We are now helping several hundred people every month move from education to high-demand careers, and our pace and scale are still growing,” says Rafael Castaneda, MedCerts’ vice president of workforce development.

Stride Inc., a large online K-12 education provider, acquired MedCerts in 2020 for roughly $80M. The company’s 50+ self-paced career training programs in healthcare, IT, and professional development typically cost $4K in tuition and other fees. Most can be completed in six months, and the company offers on-demand support to all students for a year regardless of their program’s length.

 

Udacity’s Train-to-Hire Program Now Available in AWS Marketplace — from prnewswire.com by Udacity; with thanks to GSV for this resource

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Nov. 29, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Udacity, the digital talent transformation platform, today announced the availability of its Train-to-Hire Program in AWS Marketplace, a digital catalog with thousands of software listings from independent software vendors that make it easy to find, test, buy, and deploy software that runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS). With the addition of this program, AWS customers can now address technical talent gaps in their organizations by working with Udacity to create customizable, hands-on learning programs that attract and upskill net-new sources of talent. Through these Train-to-Hire Programs, AWS customers can transform the breadth and depth of their talent pipelines, lowering recruiting costs for in-demand roles and improving the diversity of their workforce by offering new opportunities to candidates from underrepresented communities.

As enrollment falls and public skepticism grows, some colleges are cutting their prices — from hechingerreport.org by Jon Marcus
The cost of college has stopped rising faster than inflation for the first time since the 1980s

Excerpt:

Colby-Sawyer College, a nearly 200-year-old institution that inhabits a campus in the heart of this bucolic scene, has announced that it will lower its tuition next year for undergraduates by 62 percent, from $46,364 to $17,500.

The move is among the first of what experts are predicting could be many colleges’ so-called tuition resets. Other schools are adjusting what they charge in different ways.

Fewer than one in five families understand that the “sticker price” colleges put on their websites and in their catalogs is almost certainly more than they will have to pay, and six in 10 say it’s made them walk away without even bothering to apply.

From DSC:
That’s very understandable on that last item/quote.

Next Chapter Matters – Two More Universities Launch Midlife Programs For Every Budget — from forbes.com by Avivah Wittenberg-Cox; with thanks to Ray Schroeder out on LinkedIn for this resource

Excerpt:

Whether you are retiring with millions in the bank or stuck at midlife desperately dreaming of a career pivot, there may soon be a university program for you. The latest offerings coming to the market are a testament to the diversity that is likely to develop as educational institutions start to respond to ageing societies and the future of work.

The idea that you get all the education you need up front in a four-year bundle at 18, should fast fade as careers lengthen towards the six-decade mark and retirement ages drift ever upward. There are now 12 programs on offer, and the two latest launching this year in the US are the University of Chicago and the University of Colorado Denver. (I’ll be looking at programs launching in Europe next).

Report: Progress on College Completion Rates Stalls — from insidehighered.com by Safia Abdulahi; with thanks to GSV for this resource

Excerpt:

A new report from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center shows that college completion rates have stagnated, with 62.3 percent of students who enrolled in 2016 completing a degree by June 2022—virtually unchanged from last year’s six-year completion rate of 62.2 percent.

Is This the Beginning of the End of the ‘U.S. News’ Rankings’ Dominance? — from chronicle.com by Francie Diep

Excerpt:

If the law deans’ criticism sounds familiar, it’s because it echoes the complaints that have been leveled for decades against an even bigger project: the magazine’s ranking of undergraduate colleges and universities. There, too, critics have said the magazine’s metrics are flawed, opaque, and harm equity efforts.

But seldom have institutions acted on their concerns, as Yale and its peers have recently. And if elite colleges are willing to withdraw their support from one U.S. News ranking in the name of equity, why not another? In other words, is the undergraduate ranking the next venue for this kind of protest?

Not yet.

LinkedIn CEO Ryan Roslansky: Skills, Not Degrees, Matter Most in Hiring — from hbr.org

Summary:

Ryan Roslansky, the CEO of LinkedIn, thinks the site should be a place where its members’ billions of years of collective work experience should be freed to upskill anyone, anywhere, any time. Skills, more than degrees or pedigrees, are the true measure of what makes a great new hire, he argues, especially as the workforce evolves in fast and dramatic ways.

 

From DSC:
I received an email the other day re: a TytoCare Exam Kit. It said (with some emphasis added by me):

With a TytoCare Exam Kit connected to Spectrum Health’s 24/7 Virtual Urgent Care, you and your family can have peace of mind and a quick, accurate diagnosis and treatment plan whenever you need it without having to leave your home.

Your TytoCare Exam Kit will allow your provider to listen to your lungs, look inside your ears or throat, check your temperature, and more during a virtual visit.

Why TytoCare?

    • Convenience – With a TytoCare Exam Kit and our 24/7/365 On-Demand Virtual Urgent Care there is no drive, no waiting room, no waiting for an appointment.
    • Peace of Mind – Stop debating about whether symptoms are serious enough to do something about them.
    • Savings – Without the cost of gas or taking off work, you get the reliable exams and diagnosis you need. With a Virtual Urgent Care visit you’ll never pay more than $50. That’s cheaper than an in-person urgent care visit, but the same level of care.

From DSC:
It made me reflect on what #telehealth has morphed into these days. Then it made me wonder (again), what #telelegal might become in the next few years…? Hmmm. I hope the legal field can learn from the healthcare industry. It could likely bring more access to justice (#A2J), increased productivity (for several of the parties involved), as well as convenience, peace of mind, and cost savings.


 

 

Can a Group of MIT Professors Turn a White Paper Into a New Kind of College? — from edsurge.com by Jeffrey R. Young

Excerpt:

A group of professors at Massachusetts Institute of Technology dropped a provocative white paper in September that proposed a new kind of college that would address some of the growing public skepticism of higher education. This week, they took the next step toward bringing their vision from idea to reality.

That next step was holding a virtual forum that brought together a who’s who of college innovation leaders, including presidents of experimental colleges, professors known for novel teaching practices and critical observers of the higher education space.

The MIT professors who authored the white paper tried to make clear that even though they’re from an elite university, they do not have all the answers. Their white paper takes pains to describe itself as a draft framework and to invite input from players across the education ecosystem so they can revise and improve the plan.

IDEAS FOR DESIGNING An Affordable New Educational Institution

IDEAS FOR DESIGNING An Affordable New Educational Institution

The goal of this document is simply to propose some principles and ideas that we hope will lay the groundwork for the future, for an education that will be both more affordable and more effective.

Promotions and titles will be much more closely tied to educational performance—quality, commitment, outcomes, and innovation—than to research outcomes. 

 

The Status of the Teaching Profession Is at a 50-Year Low. What Can We Do About It? — from edweek.org by Caitlynn Peetz

Excerpt:

The status of the teaching profession is at its lowest in five decades, new research suggests, which its authors say is “cause for national concern.”

In a new paper published Tuesday, researchers at Brown University and the University at Albany compiled and analyzed decades’ worth of national data from more than a dozen sources about factors like teachers’ morale, the perceived prestige of the profession, and interest in entering the field, to create an annual profile of the profession between 1970 and 2022.

What they found is sobering. It suggests that the pandemic has only added fuel to a job that’s steadily declined in prestige and attractiveness for more than a decade.

“When you look at the data that we have, it’s hard to see us in a spot anywhere else other than a really critical tipping point in public education,” said Matthew Kraft, an associate professor of education and economics at Brown and co-author of the report.

Reversing “the trend of top-down control over teachers” and creating meaningful career pathways, including professional development and peer observation opportunities, could help restore morale, Kraft and Lyon wrote in their paper, though they did not recommend specific approaches.

 

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.

 

From DSC:
Will this become a trend within higher education (i.e., more transparent, accurate pricing)?


Why so many colleges have been resetting their tuition — from highereddive.com by Lilah Burke
Colby-Sawyer College is reducing its prices by 60% so tuition more accurately reflects what students pay. Other institutions are doing the same.

Excerpt:

Starting next academic year, Colby-Sawyer College will be decreasing tuition, but it’s not just shaving a few hundred dollars off its sticker price. The college is cutting its price from $46,364 to $17,500, a drop of more than 60%.

The move, said President Susan Stuebner, is intended to make more students consider attending the private New Hampshire college.

“We really recognize the need for transparency in pricing and we’re trying to align the published price more closely with what students currently pay,” she said.

But for Stuebner at Colby-Sawyer, the choice was clear. 

“The pattern of higher education being on this trajectory of high-price, high-discount has just gotten so confusing for families. We’re really doing a disservice to them,” she said. “And they’re starting to push back.”

 

Wharton, Berkeley, NYU Offering Online M.B.A.s for the First Time — from wsj.com by Lindsay Ellis; with thanks to the GSV N2K Daily Newsletter for this resource
More elite business schools try virtual degrees to lure graduate students

Online M.B.A. students at Boston University watch live broadcasts
of professors and talk on a virtual forum.
PHOTO: CARLIN STIEHL FOR THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

 

From DSC, along the lines of online-based learning:

 

Are Microcredentials Finally Gaining Traction? — from insidehighered.com by Joshua Kim

Excerpt:

This month, the London School of Economics expanded its degree partnership with 2U to launch a series of edX microcredentials that provide learners with a flexible, stackable pathway towards pursuing a fully online undergraduate education. Wim Van der Stede, LSE’s new academic dean for extended education, graciously agreed to answer my questions about these new programs.

In that time, we’ve seen the power that online learning has to meet learners’ needs at every stage of their lives and careers.

The world around us is changing, rapidly, and we need to support professionals, alumni and students in refreshing and adapting their knowledge and skills, as and when they need, through evolving lives and careers. This is at the heart of LSE’s mission as a global social science hub of research and education, and plays a key role in achieving our mission to educate for impact by empowering students to develop the skills to solve society’s most pressing issues in an ever-changing world.


A side thought from DSC:
Speaking of Economics, I wonder if and how Artificial Intelligence (AI) will impact the field of Economics?


 

Coursera is Evolving into a Third-Wave EdTech Company — from eliterate.us by Michael Feldstein

Excerpts:

This is the vision of Coursera’s three-sided platform at scale, connecting learners, educators and institutions in a global learning ecosystem designed to keep pace with our rapidly changing world.

Coursera CEO Jeff Maggioncalda

Coursera's diversified model with 3 segments -- consumer, enterprise, and degrees

The point of this slide is to show the diversification of Coursera’s business. Degree programs may be down, but enterprise licenses and direct-to-consumer certificates are up. But it also indicates Coursera’s ability to diversify revenue streams for its university content providers. The enterprise business provides a distribution channel between universities and employers. From what I can tell, it’s a Guild competitor, even though the two companies look very different on the surface. The consumer segment started as the MOOC business and has expanded into the “tweener” space between courses and degrees: certificates, microdegrees, whatever.

 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian