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Articles: UB Archive

Is 2011 going to be the "Year of the Mobile Web" for higher education? A few studies have already hinted it. According to a white paper published by The Nielsen Company in December 2010, "Mobile Youth Around the World," 48 percent of the 15- to 24-year-olds in the U.S. now browse the web on their mobile devices?even though only 33 percent own smartphones. The Pew Internet and American Life Project concurred in its own report, "Mobile Access 2010," released in July 2010.

Which widely recognized institutions of higher learning come to mind when you think "Big Business"? University Business readers may think of world class research universities and nationally ranked business schools like Harvard, Stanford, Baylor, Babson, or the University of Chicago. Beyond these brand name business school programs and their big league corporate benefactors, global economists, political thought leaders, and higher ed futurists are looking to "small business" as the core accelerator in the emergent global economy.

The growing trend toward three-year degrees in America has not been a quiet transition. Many of the major media outlets have covered the seemingly sudden phenomenon that will undoubtedly change the landscape of American higher education. Experts and politicians have sounded off on how the new model will redeem struggling institutions and answer problems associated with rising tuition costs.

A picture is worth a thousand words, especially when trying to convey complex ideas. At Purdue University (Ind.), a home-grown smartphone app lets students easily incorporate mobile video components into class assignments and share them with teachers and other students.

Called DoubleTake, the app was developed by the university's information technology staff and is available through the iTunes App store. An Android-based version is in the works as well.

Transfer used to be what happened when students realized too late that they picked a college or university that wasn’t right for them. It wasn’t until recently that the valuable market of transfer students has started being studied and really tapped into.

“For a while, transfers were kind of looked at as extra,” says Bonita C. Jacobs, executive director of The National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students at the University of North Texas. Admissions offices began realizing they’d be left behind if they didn’t start recruiting transfers.

Universities are often in a unique position when it comes to managing their pharmacy benefits. Those associated with medical schools, hospital, and clinics often have affiliated pharmacies and access to staff with clinical pharmacy expertise. If an institution can fully leverage these in-house capabilities, it can have a dramatic effect on its overall pharmacy benefit budget. How to best leverage these capabilities should be considered when HR administrators selects a pharmacy benefit management (PBM) partner.

I know that spring is finally upon us because my wife has started organizing her vegetable garden. The garden, like the start of baseball season and the sound of lawn mowers instead of snow blowers, is a sure sign of longer days and warmer evenings.

Two states 1,000 miles apart are taking dissimilar measures in response to their budgets that plan to have the same end result: Autonomy for Wisconsin's and Connecticut's flagship state universities.

In Connecticut, where the University of Connecticut has always been autonomous from the rest of the state universities, a plan by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to merge the Connecticut State University System, the System of Connecticut Community Colleges, Charter Oak online college, and the state Department of Higher Education, would keep it that way.

A dream for San Fernando Valley officials for 30 years and a campus plan for the past decade has finally become reality at California State University, Northridge.

Extended-learning schools are inherently more complex than traditional undergraduate programs, typical graduate programs, and professional colleges. A more varied student base has much broader goals. Most offer more distance-learning options, and students must be served equally well, whether the next town over or half a country away. San Diego State University’s College of Extended Studies, with 25,000 students, is no different. But with seven databases, three payment systems, and no “live” registration, an already complex operation became that much more difficult.

Higher education has its own special kind of bureaucracy, but even by those standards, the convoluted process by which Jamestown Community College (N.Y.) contracted with faculty members to teach extra courses stood out. From creation to submission with payroll, the documents touched more than half a dozen pairs of hands, sometimes delaying payment and increasing the likelihood of misplacement. They were created anew each semester with information from a database that wasn’t always updated, resulting in data entry errors.

The iTunes generation is used to buying music, watching television, and playing video games on screens perched in their laps, not going to record stores, student lounges, or mall arcades. Getting all of that information from faraway servers to laptop computers places an enormous burden on campus networking resources and IT departments, many of which are underfunded and understaffed, yet are expected to meet students’ expectations of ever quicker access to entertainment.

In these days of instantaneous communication, having to wait for an answer feels anachronistic. If our e-mail isn’t returned within five minutes, we call our colleague to make sure she got it. Technology, it seems, has sped communication as well as slowed it down, as multiple means of messaging?telephones, online channels, face-to-face conversation?crowd one another for attention.

An empty classroom became a call center staffed by students after two weeks of training. Now phone wait times are under two minutes.