Along these lines of innovation/experimentation (but this time within higher education):










Digital Revolution’s Winners And Losers — from Information Week by John Foley
Workers with in-demand digital skills benefit most as computers increasingly take over
everyday tasks. In this InformationWeek 500 video, MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson discusses
how this trend could affect your enterprise.

From DSC:
I agree with Erik that a large swath of people are being left behind, mainly because of technological changes and the pace of those changes. Again I ask, can you hear the engines roar?  How can we re-train folks to take advantage of the 3+million open jobs out there? How can we reinvent ourselves as quickly as possible?
The pace has changed -- don't come onto the track in a Model T
  • Andrew McAfee: Are droids taking our jobs?
    Robots and algorithms are getting good at jobs like building cars, writing articles, translating — jobs that once required a human. So what will we humans do for work? Andrew McAfee walks through recent labor data to say: We ain’t seen nothing yet. But then he steps back to look at big history, and comes up with a surprising and even thrilling view of what comes next.
  • America’s jobs gap: 9 million — from cnn.com by Tami Luhby

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Higher education used to be on deck, but is now at bat. [Christian]


From DSC:
My way of thinking about what’s happening to higher education these days borrows from the sport of baseball:  Higher education used to be on deck; but now, we’re at bat.

I’ve watched as the former power brokers throughout many other industries reluctantly got out of the dugout, nervously began their warm up on deck, and then timidly moved up to bat as well. They were trying to cling to the status quo. Which didn’t work.  We’ve all seen the results.  There are new power brokers in those industries now.  (Which is I why I assert that there is danger in the status quo — our organizations need to always be at the work of reinventing ourselves.)

If I had to pick the top 2 forces driving change throughout the higher education landscape, I would have to say the cost of obtaining a degree and technology-enabled innovation.

Control is an illusion; people will find a way.


The items below reinforced my perspectives when I saw them this morning.  They inspired me to create the above graphic, something I’ve been meaning to do for quite some time now.


Our thesis with xEducation is that the internet is happening to higher education and that successful universities of the future will be those that find ways to generate value for its many stakeholders that go beyond content provision and teaching. What exactly that value proposition is remains unclear. On the one hand, content and (recorded) lectures can easily be shared with limited costs. The internet scales content exceptionally well. The human, social, processes of learning don’t scale. Research doesn’t scale (yet). Regional and national economic value generation doesn’t scale. In these spaces where scalability does not work well, universities will likely find their new roles in society. Over the next six months, we’ll explore and test this thesis and place the discussion of higher education reform on a firmer foundation than the latest tool and popular hype.


College may never be the same — from USA Today by Mary Beth Marklein


“The industry has operated more or less along the same business model and even the same technology for hundreds of years,” says John Nelson, managing director of Moody’s Higher Education. “MOOCS represent a rapidly developing and emerging change and that is very, very rare.”

In a new report, Moody’s Investor Service calls MOOCs a “pivotal development” that has the potential to revolutionize higher education. Questions remain whether these online courses can be profitable and whether traditional colleges will award credit for them. But if successful, MOOCs could lead to lower costs for families and access to higher-quality instruction for anyone in the world who has Internet access.


From DSC:
MOOCs are no doubt a very important experiment within higher education today.  It’s too early to tell what the future will bring in terms of pricing, certification/accredidation, learning effectiveness, the form(s) they may take, the corporate world’s perspective on them, etc.

However, my main point that I want to make today — September 13, 2012 — is that MOOCs provide yet another example why the question of “where’s the ROI on all of this investment in technology?” should be considered a dead question — let’s put it to rest for good.   I simply can’t take that question seriously anymore.  At minimum, MOOCs provide an extremely affordable means of gaining exposure to information and ascertaining one’s interest level in that subject. At the price of higher education these days, such knowledge of what one enjoys and would like to learn more about is worth a great deal.  MOOCs rest on the foundations set by so many other investments, technological advancements and inventions, trends, platforms, devices, and the pedagogies available to us due to these other foundational pieces.


iTunes U Course Manager hands on — from UCL – London’s Global University  by Matt Jenner


iTunes U is known as a wonderful platform for finding recorded lectures and podcasts from academics and institutions across the world. But recently it’s also become a location for entire courses, with students, multiple resources and some interaction all happening on devices such as the iPad. It’s all very Apple-based, which means anyone without this hardware can’t access it and thus it remains a little elitist. BUT there’s still some good reasons to look into it – and I hope this begins to explain why.

From DSC:
Thanks Matt for the helpful screenshots and overview of what iTunes U is offering these days!

If Apple were to devote more resources to create a fully-stocked CMS/LMS, they could add a significant piece to the overall ecosystem they continue to build.  But this time, it would have significant benefits to those who want to learn and to reinvent themselves over time.

For example, what if:

  • Faculty members worked with students to create the textbooks using iBooks Author?
  • And the textbooks were free?
  • iPads were used in BYOD type of settings and audio/video/text/graphics-based files could be “beamed” up to a larger presentation display? (Or all of the materials that they would need are already on the iPad from their orientation day and onward — and would constantly be updated throughout their collegiate days?  In fact, a supplemental charge could provide the ability for alumni to subscribe to constantly updated streams of content as well.)
  • CMS/LMS functions like discussion boards, wikis, blogs, podcasts, videoconferencing and more could be built into iTunes U?

Could be a potent learning setup as such cloud-based materials are available to everyone throughout the globe — at very attractive prices.


How children learn: Portraits of classrooms around the world — by Maria Popova and Julian Germain
A revealing lens on a system-phenomenon both global in reach and strikingly local in degree of diversity.


 Jessore, Bangladesh. Year 10, English.
Image courtesy Julian Germain


Also see:

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Your future TV is not about Tele-Vision [Eaton]

Your future TV is not about Tele-Vision — from FastCompany.com by Kit Eaton

Excerpt (emphasis below from DSC; also see the above categories to see how I see this as a highly-relevant component to our future learning ecosystems):

Then imagine what a hybrid of Apple’s tech and efforts like GetGlue, Shazam, and other interactive systems will be like when they’re more integrated into your 2017 smart TV. The big screen in your living room won’t be a one-way window into another world you can’t touch anymore. It’ll be a discovery engine, a way to learn facts, interact with the world, talk to people, find new and surprising content to absorb. Advertisers will love it, and companies like Nielsen–which largely has to guess all those stats about who watches which show at primetime nowadays–will be able to get accurate data…which may mean more appealing shows.



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



Also see:

The rise of the multinational university — from universityworldnews.com by Geoff Maslen

More than 200 degree-granting international branch campuses of universities are now located in foreign countries. But a new report says some universities are considering transforming the branch campus model into fully fledged multinational universities “by slicing up the global value chain in ways akin to multinational corporations”.

Prepared by Sean Gallagher and Geoffrey Garrett from the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney Business School, the draft report says many of these universities are focusing on China because of its scale and rapid development, and on Singapore because of its aggressive government policy and high level of development.

Also see:

Disruptive Higher Education is Opening Access Worldwide — from evolllution.com by Thomas Gibbons | 2012-2013 President, UPCEA

Something extraordinary is taking place in higher education. Not a week goes by without a national headline about the latest “it” initiative in the online learning world.

This summer a dozen highly ranked universities announced signing up with Coursera, a private start-up that will offer free online classes. They join forces with founding institutions Stanford, Princeton, University of Pennsylvania and University of Michigan.

What is certain is that the walls of the most exclusive universities are coming down—but not in a bad way. Many of our great universities have prided themselves on creating the highest-quality learning communities with the world’s best faculty, premiere research facilities and most beautiful campuses, but they have also defined their greatness by not how many students they educate but by how few they allow within their hallowed walls.


Apple's iTunes U may be leading a global revolution in higher education


From DSC:

Apple has been putting together a solid ecosystem of hardware and software that allows for the creation and distribution of content.  “Easy is hard” I like to say and Apple’s done a great job of creating easy-to-use devices and apps. They have a long way to go before iTunes U has all the built-in functionality needed to replace a Blackboard Learn or a Moodle type of CMS/LMS.  But given their solid history of creating highly-usable hardware and software, they could deal a smashing blow to what’s happening in the CMS/LMS world today. 

Plus, with Apple TV, Airplay mirroring, the growth of second screen-based apps, and machine-to-machine communications, Apple is poised to get into this game…big time. If my thoughts re: “Learning from the Living [Class] Room” come to fruition, Apple would be positioned for some serious worldwide impact on lifelong learning; especially when combined with the developments such as the use of MOOCs, AI and HCI-related innovations, learning agents, web-based learner profiles, and potential/upcoming changes to accreditation.

Too far fetched do you think? Hmmm….well considering that online learning has already been proven to be at least as affective as f2f learning — and in some studies has produced even greater learning outcomes/results — I wonder how things will look in mid-2015…? (That is, where is the innovation occurring?)


  • Connected TV penetration to top 50% by 2017 — from worldscreen.com by Mansha Daswani
    SCOTTSDALE: ABI Research forecasts that more than 50 percent of television homes in North America and Western Europe will have Internet-connected TV sets by 2017, up from just 10 percent last year, while Blu-ray player penetration is expected to rise to more than 76 percent from about 25 percent. The report notes that the popularity of connected TV is not limited to developed markets—there have been increasing shipments to China, ABI notes.
  • Advertisers need to pay attention to connected TV [INFOGRAPHIC] — from Mashable.com
  • The future of TV is two screens, one held firmly in your hands — from FastCompany.com by Kit Eaton

    The connected TV, sometimes called the smart TV (and even branded as such by Samsung) is a growing phenomenon: TV makers are adding limited apps, Net connectivity, and even streaming media powers to their newer TVs in the hope they’ll persuade you to upgrade your newish LCD for a flatter, smarter unit. They’re desperate to, given how flat this market is. But according to new research from Pew, the future of TV may actually be a little more closely aligned with the notion of a “connected TV viewer,” an important distinction. Pew spoke to over 2,200 U.S. adults a couple of months ago and discovered that 52% of all adult cell phone owners now “incorporate their mobile devices into their television watching experiences.”


From DSC:
I’m a member of the team working at Calvin College to get online learning implemented for the College.  I’m grateful for — and proud of — our team and what we’ve been able to accomplish thus far.  (BTW, I use the word pride knowingly but carefully.)   My hope/dream/vision is that people from all over the world will be able to get a solid, Christian-based education at a significantly-reduced price!


Calvin Online -- Students and faculty appraise the online classes offered through Calvin's 2012 pilot program.


GLOBAL: The future of international student mobility — from universityworldnews.com by Dr. Rahul Choudaha


International student mobility in the first decade of the 21st century has been transformed by two major external events, 9/11 and the recession of 2008. Today the rationale for international student recruitment has shifted from attracting talent to make the student body more diverse, to seeking an additional source of revenue.

However, a complex interplay of variables will make it difficult to predict where this growth will go.

As we have seen, the influence of unpredictable events like 9/11 and the recession on student mobility is far-reaching and global. In addition, government policies related to visa requirements, specifically those concerning financial requirements and post-education work opportunities, will have a big influence on student mobility.

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Year two notable delegates

  • Dr. Len Stolyarchuk – Moscow International School of Tomorrow, Russia
  • Dr. Mark Daley – Heritage Christian Online School, Canada
  • Megan Strange – North Cobb Christian School, USA
  • Barend Blom – Dalat International School, Malaysia

I’ll be in the HoloClass today — from The EvoLLLution (LLL=LifeLongLearning) by Frank Palatnick,  UN Advisor of Global Education, International Agency for Economic Development

From DSC:
A creative and very interesting vision from Frank — the first in the series that The Evolution is running re: education in the mid-21st century.  I can’t help but wonder how this vision impacts jobs/career paths out there. Nice work Frank.
© 2021 | Daniel Christian