From DSC:
Hmmm…many colleges and universities keep a close eye on their peers and often respond with similar strategies that their peers are pursuing. But who is an organization’s peer? The Chronicle of Higher Education‘s posting below — “How a College Decides Who Its Peers Are” — stated that “there is clearly no shared definition of what constitutes a peer institution.” 

Plus, I found this item especially interesting:

Harvard University selected only three peer institutions: Yale, Princeton, and Stanford. But 22 institutions, including Bowdoin, named Harvard as a peer. Bowdoin, a small, liberal-arts college with about 1,800 undergraduate students and no graduate programs, chose 98 “peers,” including the entire Ivy League and many large universities, some of which enroll more than 10,000 students. Bowdoin itself was picked by 35 institutions as a peer. All of them were small, liberal-arts colleges or universities that primarily serve undergraduates.

I have often thought that colleges and universities should care far less about what their peers are doing. Rather, they should move forward with their own solid visions, bold actions, and well-thought-through strategies — as there can be a great deal of danger and risk in the status quo.

Too many alternatives have been appearing — and will likely continue to appear — on the lifelong learning landscapes. Most likely, these new organizations will offer in-demand credentials/skills as well as the capabilities of helping people constantly reinvent themselves — with far less expensive price tags associated with these types of offerings.


How a College Decides Who Its Peers Are — from chronicle.com by Susan Poser
Questions of institutional identity are at the core of the process.

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

The mismatch between whom an institution chose as peers, and the colleges that reciprocated, pervades the data set. It raises the question of how institutions designate peers, which is a mystery. In some cases it is likely to be decided by someone in the Office of Institutional Research or the provost’s office in response to the Ipeds survey, while in others perhaps some process leads to a consensus among administrators. Regardless, there is clearly no shared definition of what constitutes a peer institution.

Also relevant/see:


 

Colleges Are Hiring. But Do People Want to Work There? — from chronicle.com by Kevin R. McClure
Higher ed used to be insulated from the whims of the labor market. No more.

Excerpts:

This perhaps comes as a surprise to some college hiring officials. For a long time, colleges have operated under the assumption that they can easily replace people. And until recently, that was true. Colleges were viewed as places where employees can enact their values, where jobs were spared the ravages of recessions, and where deep relationships can be forged with students and colleagues. When someone left a job, institutions would post the opening and often receive more than enough applicants, especially for faculty positions. Why try hard to retain someone if you can always count on a deep pool of applicants?

That rosy vision of higher education was already starting to sour prior to the pandemic. And after the last two years, it isn’t safe to assume we can field the same numbers of applicants.

That’s largely because employee morale at colleges is tanking. Some in the industry have told me it’s the lowest they’ve ever seen. There are several likely reasons for it, including low pay and frustration that administrations aren’t taking health concerns of frontline workers during the pandemic seriously enough. But perhaps the biggest cause for the drop in morale is understaffing. Higher-education workers are exhausted from years of employment rolls that aren’t just lean — they’re malnourished. 

Has the Campus Workplace Changed Forever? — from chronicle.com by Megan Zahneis
College leaders are trying different strategies to adapt to a new reality.

Excerpt:

Despite hopeful signs that the worst of the pandemic is behind us, there is a growing understanding that remote and hybrid work, at least in some form, is here to stay. With the benefit of hindsight and enough time to consider things more thoughtfully, institutional leaders and academic administrators are increasingly engaging with essential questions about remote work: What is the best way to manage teams at a distance? What does it take to recruit, retain, and engage faculty and staff members? What can higher education learn from other industries that have long embraced telecommuting?

Also relevant/see:

Our Nation’s Teachers Are Hustling to Survive — from edsurge.com by Emily Tate
Nearly 1 in 5 American public school teachers work a second job outside of the classroom. Why is this their reality?

Rothrock’s story is not exceptional—at least in her line of work, in this country. If she were any other highly educated American professional, that might be different. But Rothrock is a teacher. That a teacher must work a second, part-time job on weeknights and weekends, year-round, more than 20 years into her career, in spite of a master’s degree and a modest lifestyle, is so universally accepted among her peers and colleagues in education that it barely warrants notice.

It’s (Past) Time to Redesign the Teaching Profession — from by Katie Kimbrell

Excerpts:

According to a recent Forbes article, national research found that 54% of teachers surveyed in 2021 are considering leaving the teaching profession within the next two years. More urgently, Edweek reported that 48% of teachers have considered quitting in the last 30 days.

To be clear, these numbers are cataclysmic.

Our local numbers are probably not dissimilar from elsewhere in the country: According to a regional study by LeanLab Education, teacher burnout was among the top three challenges mentioned consistently by the near 250 educators surveyed.  In a recent online survey by Kansas PAC, Freedom to Learn, 78% of teachers (of 780 responses) would not recommend their profession to students, while 80% of teachers would not recommend their profession to friends and family.

When it comes to the teaching profession, what we’ve designed simply isn’t working anymore (when and if it ever did is another debate).

 

 

Per Johann Neem, the innovations that promise to save higher ed are a farce.

The University in Ruins — from chronicle.com by Johann N. Neem
The “innovations” that promise to save higher ed are a farce.

From DSC:
First of all,
I appreciated Johann Neem mentioning and/or discussing several books in one posting:

  • Ronald G. Musto’s The Attack on Higher Education (2021)
  • Arthur Levine’s and Scott J. Van Pelt’s The Great Upheaval (2021)
  • Bill Readings’ The University in Ruins (1996)
  • Ronald J. Daniels’ What Universities Owe Democracy (2021)

And as a disclosure here, I have not read those books. 

Below are excerpts with some of my comments:

It’s already happening. Today, we walk among the ruins of an institution that once had a larger purpose. It’s not clear what role universities should play in society, and to what or to whom they are accountable, other than their corporate interests.

To some, that’s not a problem, at least according to Arthur Levine and Scott J. Van Pelt in The Great Upheaval (2021). They see higher education undergoing the same transformation that reshaped the music, film, and newspaper industries. Rather than place-based education overseen by tenured professors, they anticipate “the rise of anytime, anyplace, consumer-driven content and source agnostic, unbundled, personalized education paid for by subscription.”

Between Musto’s existential fears of disruption and Levine and Van Pelt’s embrace of it lies a third path. It takes the form of a wager — outlined by Ronald J. Daniels in What Universities Owe Democracy (2021) — that universities can and should continue to matter because of their importance in civic democratic life.

The article covers how the learning ecosystems within higher education have morphed from their religious roots to being an apparatus of the nation-state to then becoming a relatively independent bureaucratic system to other things and to where we are today.

Along the journey discussing these things, one of the things that caught my eye was this statement:

Hopkins, in this sense, lived up to its founding president Daniel Coit Gilman’s 19th-century aspiration that universities be places that acquire, conserve, refine, and distribute knowledge.

From DSC:
While I completely agree with that aspiration, I think more institutions of higher education could follow what John Hopkins University did with their efforts concerning the Covid-19 situation, as Neem mentioned. Generally speaking, institutions of higher education are not distributing knowledge to the levels that Gilman envisioned years ago.

In fact, these days those working within K12 are doing a whole lot better at sharing information with society than those who work within higher education are. For example, when I search Twitter for K12 educators who share content on Twitter, they are out there all over the place — and many with tens of thousands of followers. They share information with parents, families, fellow educators, students, school boards, and others. Yet this is not the case for those working in higher education. Faculty members normally:

  • aren’t out on Twitter
  • don’t blog
  • don’t have a podcast
  • don’t write for society at large. Instead, their expertise is often locked up — existing behind paywalls in academic journals. In other words, they talk to each other.

Later on…

As Daniels intuits, without a larger purpose to hold them fast, there is nothing to prevent universities from being buffeted by winds until they have lost direction. That is what Readings foresaw: Globalization liberates universities from national fetters, but at the risk of ruin.

From DSC:
While globalization may have something to do with universities becoming unanchored from their original purposes, globalization isn’t at the top of my mind when I reflect upon what’s been happening with colleges and universities these last few decades.

To see but one area of massive change, let’s take a brief look at college sports. There are now multimillion-dollar stadium projects, enormous coaches’ salaries, and numerous situations where tax-paying citizens can’t even watch sporting events without tons of advertisements being thrown into their faces every few seconds. Personally speaking, on numerous occasions, I couldn’t even access the games at all — as I wasn’t paying for the subscriptions to the appropriate providers.

Also, as another example of becoming anchored — and going back to the 1980’s — I attended Northwestern University for my undergraduate degree in Economics. While I have several wonderful lifelong friends from that experience for whom I’m deeply grateful, even back then NU had already moved far away from its motto which is based on Philippians 4:8.

Instead, please allow me to tell you what that learning community taught me and strongly encouraged me to think about:

  • You are only successful if you have the corner office, drive the higher numbered BMW’s, and have many people reporting to you.
  • If you make a lot of money.
  • You are supposed to compete against others vs. being in relationships with others. As but one example here, our test scores were published — by our Social Security numbers — outside our professors’ offices for all to see how we measured up to our classmates.

In fact, I’m not even sure that I would use the word “community” at all when I reflect upon my years at Northwestern. Instead, a WIIFM approach was encouraged (i.e., What’s In It For Me? where you are supposed to look out for #1). It took me years to unlearn some of those “lessons” and “learnings.”

But I realize that that’s not the case with all learning communities.

As Neem alluded to, I love the idea that an institution of higher education can — and often does — impact students’ hearts as well as minds. That was the focus at Calvin College (now Calvin University). Our oldest daughter went there and she was profoundly and positively influenced by her experiences there. In that context, students were encouraged to be in relationships with one another. There was plenty of hugging, praying for one another, etc. going on in that setting. There truly was community there.

***

Neem doesn’t think much of Levine’s and Van Pelt’s perspectives. He claims there’s nothing new in their book. He seems to discard the arguments being made about the cost of higher ed and, like many others, clings to the intellectual roots/purpose of higher ed.

While I’m not against intellect or pursuing knowledge — in fact, I’m all for it — I just have a problem when the price of doing so continues to become out of reach for soooooo many people.

Personally, I’ve tried to lower the cost of obtaining a degree within higher education for many years…but I was/we were only successful in doing so for a few years (and that was during a pilot of online-based learning). Yohan Na and I created the graphic below in 2008 for example — as I was trying to raise awareness of the dangers of the status quo:
.

.

So from a cost/access perspective, Levine’s and Van Pelt’s perspectives here sound pretty good to me. It appears to be much more affordable and realistic for the masses. Otherwise, the image/reality of the ivory tower is maintained…allowing “intellectuals” to continue to live and operate within their own sphere/hive/tribe.

Also, we need an AI-backed system of presenting which skills are needed and then how to get them. The ways things are set up today, institutions of traditional higher education have not been able to deal with the current pace of change out there.

As a final comment here…
The changing directions/purposes of institutions of higher education present a good example of why I entitled this blog Learning Ecosystems — as the systems that we use to learn and grow in are constantly morphing:

  • People come and go
  • Tools and vendors come and go
  • Purposes, focuses, and/or mission statements change
  • Our sources of information (i.e., our streams of content) come and go
  • Etc.
 

A Skills-First Blueprint to Better Job Outcomes — from linkedin.com by Karin Kimbrough
As Chief Economist at LinkedIn, I lead a team of economists and data scientists that unearth the most interesting insights from over 800M global members. Every month I’ll share a snapshot of key trends to help shed light on where the world of work is headed. This month, we’re looking at new findings around the shift to a skills-first talent ecosystem. 

An excerpt from that last link/posting which is entitled “A Skills-First Blueprint for Better Job Outcomes”:

A few key findings:

  • Skills are Changing
  • The Pandemic Pulled the Future Forward
  • Skills-First Hiring Can Work for Both Job Seekers and Hiring Managers
  • Identifying Similar Skills Helps Workers Pivot to New Roles
  • Amidst the Great Reshuffle, Investing in Skills is a Key to Retention
 

A skier going off a cliff

Will Your College Survive the Demographic Cliff? — from chronicle.com by Jon Boeckenstedt
National trends are interesting — but enrolling students is a local challenge.

Excerpts:

We are at a critical moment: Declining enrollment even in one sector (say, community colleges) is troublesome because of downstream effects. Declining revenue and wavering state support, coupled with fewer high-school graduates, fewer families that don’t need financial help, and an increasingly negative attitude from the public toward higher education, may take us to a long-rumored tipping point.

If it’s true that all politics is local, then in some sense so is (almost) all college enrollment.

 

Where’s the upskilling and reskilling market headed? — from edtechreview.in by Priyanka Gupta
Upskilling and Reskilling are the new buzzwords in the edtech industry and corporate learning. With times changing at light speed, unlearning and relearning have become the norm.

Excerpt:

To understand more about the reskilling and Upskilling market, read further about:

  • The Need of Upskilling and Reskilling
  • Workforce Shift and The Upcoming Trends
  • The Key Element in the Future of Upskilling
  • The Challenges Ahead

Life of Technical Skills
Technical skills change rapidly. The industry standards for technologies and processes shift more quickly than any education system can turn out leaders. A survey by Prudential reveals that only 46% of working professionals think their skills will make them competitive in the coming ten years. Unless the skill providers speed up their initiatives or programs’ design, development and deployment, organisations and professionals will struggle to find relevancy in jobs and employees relating to skill levels with the dynamic nature of technology and related jobs. 

 

Hybrid learning for hybrid jobs: Reskilling for the digital age — from chieflearningofficer.com by David Porcaro
Just as “hybrid jobs” have become “jobs,” the old definition of “hybrid learning” that mixes in-person and online experiences is fast becoming just “learning.” It’s incumbent on employers, training providers and learners themselves to ensure that as we navigate that shift, we’re building a more meaningful and productive learning experience in the process.

What would happen if we reimagined hybrid learning as “learning that equips workers for hybrid jobs,” and built a new approach from there? That’s the question we’ve been working to answer at General Assembly, where our work with employers across a range of fields — from the tech industry to retail and manufacturing — has helped us understand what it takes for learners to be successful in the digital age. Our learning philosophy focuses on four key goals, which could form the building blocks of a new definition of hybrid learning.

Also relevant/see:

Leveraging experiential learning in a hybrid world — from chieflearningofficer.com by George Hallenbeck
The disruption brought on by the shift to hybrid work provides excellent opportunities for experiential learning. By balancing intentionality with support and maximizing the quantity, quality and diversity of learning experiences, both organizations and individual leaders can adapt and thrive in this new era of work.

 

US Department of Labor announces availability of $55M in grants to provide pre-release training, employment services to incarcerated people
Funding aims to improve employment opportunities, meet needs of local labor market

WASHINGTON – Each year, state prisons release approximately 573,000 people who need the resources and support to re-enter and find stable employment in their communities successfully.

Pre-release services have proven to help reduce the likelihood that formerly incarcerated people will return to prison and help these individuals fully reintegrate into their communities. To support this effort, the U.S. Department of Labor today announced the availability of $55 million in Pathway Home 3 Grants that seek to reduce barriers to employment by providing training and employment services to incarcerated individuals before their release from state correctional facilities, or county or local jails. Funds will also support continued comprehensive services post-release.

Authorized by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, Pathway Home 3 Grants will fund projects to serve adults convicted under federal, state or local law and who are scheduled for release within 20 to 270 days from the time they enroll in the project.

The department’s Employment and Training Administration will award up to 15 grant projects – ranging from $1 million to $4 million each – to teach returning citizens foundational skills such as job readiness and job search strategies, and to provide apprenticeships and occupational training leading to industry-recognized credentials.

Organizations seeking grants must partner with a state correctional facility or a local or county jail. Applicants are encouraged to collaborate with employers, industry organizations or union partners to commit to providing work experience, onsite job-related mentoring and post-release employment opportunities for participants. Successful applicants will provide training that leads to in-demand skills to meet the needs of local employers.

Building on the findings from the Linking Employment Activities Pre-Release implementation study, the grants are designed to help eliminate the time gap between release from prison and enrollment into a workforce development reentry program leading to skills-based employment.

Learn more about the Department of Labor’s Reentry Employment Opportunities program.

 

Corporate Leaders Lag in Digital Skills; L&D Can Help — from learningsolutionsmag.com by Pamela Hogle

Excerpt:

As we move into a reality where digital skills dominate and the pandemic has pushed many organizations to accelerate their digital transitions, a yawning skills gap has become apparent: Fewer than a third of digital leaders rate themselves as “effective in digital acumen” according to the DDI Global Leadership Forecast.

But HR and leaders rank digital acumen, which is seen as “a significant predictor not only for digital transformation readiness, but also for innovation and responding to the competitive environment,” as a must-have skill, the DDI report said.

This gap is bad for business. “The world’s most digitally mature companies lead all other companies in value creation. They also have proved much more resilient during the crisis,” research by the Boston Consulting Group found.

Also from learningsolutionsmag.com see:

 

Accelerated Digital Skills and the ‘Bootcamp Boom’. — from holoniq.com
The market for accelerated digital skills is stepping up to a whole new level. Bootcamps, among others, are evolving rapidly to meet the opportunity.

Excerpt:

Tech Bootcamps re-skilled and up-skilled over 100,000 professionals globally in 2021, up from less than 20,000 in 2015. We expect this number to reach over 380,000 by 2025 representing over $3B of expenditure with significant upside as tech up-skilling models and modes overlap and converge. Governments, employers, universities and colleges everywhere are embracing rapid, high ROI training to build capacity in software, marketing, cyber and tech sales to drive their economies and growth.

Also from holoniq.com, see:

Also relevant/see:

 

As seen/accessible from this page.

A brief insert from DSC:
Another futurist Thomas Frey has some thoughts along this same line.

A top futurist predicts the largest internet company of 2030 will be an online school

#Canada #education #future #trends #careerdevelopment #change #paceofchange #automation #robotics #education #AI #learnhowtolearn #unlearn #learningecosystems #lifelonglearning #endofroutine #experientiallearning

 

Machines are for answers. Humans are for questions. 

 


Also relevant/see:


 

S&P raises view of higher ed sector for 2022, but colleges’ fortunes are diverging — from highereddive.com by Rick Seltzer

Excerpts:

  • S&P Global Ratings revised its view of the U.S. not-for-profit higher education sector to stable, ending four years of negative outlooks even as it said it is monitoring divergence in fortunes between strong and weak institutions in the market.

Some stressed institutions will be able to leverage high-value real estate, branding or strong programs into a merger or affiliation, according to the ratings agency. But with colleges competing for often-shrinking pools of students, S&P expects more closures — especially of small, regional, private liberal arts colleges.

Also see:

Breaking Down Online Postsecondary Enrollment Growth in the United States — from holoniq.com
Welcome to the multi-speed online enrollment economy. The highs and the lows of the top 20+ institutions.

Digital capability is arguably the number one priority for US universities and colleges. Postsecondary enrollments in the United States are in decline, institutions are bracing for a much bigger 2025 enrollment crash (due to a falling birthrate from the last recession) and a tight labor market is encouraging employers to drop requirements such as degrees and instead embrace faster, cheaper and higher ROI online up-skilling programs.

 

Resource via @ernperez
at this article/page.

From DSC:

Cloud-based learner profiles are a likely element of our future learning ecosystems

 

14 Predictions for Higher Education in 2022 [Schaffhauser]

14 Predictions for Higher Education in 2022

14 Predictions for Higher Education in 2022 — from campustechnology.com by Dian Schaffhauser

Excerpt:

Ask people working in higher education what they expect will happen in the new year, and the outlook is filled with visions that build on what we’ve been experiencing on college and university campuses for the last two years: a major focus on learning formats; continued exploitation of new technology; and the use of new digital models that move users “beyond Zoom.” Here we present the collective predictions of 14 IT leaders, instructional folks and a student about what they anticipate seeing in 2022. As one put it, “Let’s go, 2022! We have work to do!”

From DSC:
I’d like to thank Dian Schaffhauser, Rhea Kelly, and Mary Grush for letting me contribute some thoughts to the various conversations that Campus Technology Magazine hosts and/or initiates. I inserted some reflections into the above article and I hope that you’ll take a moment to read my and others’ thoughts out there.

 

Top Ten HR Trends For The 2022 Workplace — from forbes.com by Jeanne Meister

As we enter 2022, changes in how we work, where we work, who we work with, why we work, and the technologies we use are in continual flux. Many of these changes started prior to the pandemic, were accelerated by it, and have become permanent aspects of the workplace.

Just as I have done in 2016, 2017201820192020, and 2021, here is my countdown of what you should include on your HR roadmap for 2022.

Also see:

 

 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian