Feature

Competency-based programs: ‘Low cost, high quality’

UW Extension School, Brandman University launching all-you-can-learn

The University of Wisconsin’s all-you-can-learn, competency-based flex program—designed for adult students—started in January. Students can pay $2,250 for a three-month, all-you-can-learn subscription, or just $900 to work on a single set of competencies, says Vice Chancellor Aaron Brower, the interim provost of the UW Extension School.

Tuition covers assessments and faculty mentoring, and students’ get help organizing their studies from an academic coach—a new role that combines duties of an advisor and tutor. All work is graded by University of Wisconsin faculty.

Massive, open, online, for credit

Three models for allowing students to earn credit for completed MOOCs

Despite growing interest in the higher ed community about the potential of credit being offered for MOOCs, the number of institutions that have rolled out such programs is small.

And though more than 8 million people have taken a MOOC in the past three years, the number of students to take advantage of MOOC-for-credit programs is even smaller.

Online proctoring gaining popularity with MOOCs

Solutions for authenticating the results of student assessments conducted online

As more colleges and universities offer credit for MOOCs, one problem that has cropped up is how to authenticate the results of student assessments conducted online.

A handful of companies have developed a solution: online proctoring. Using a webcam to monitor the students as they take tests, online proctors can peer into students’ living rooms, kitchens or back patios, watching their computer screens and observing their eye movements to ensure they are not looking at notes in a closed-book exam.

Vincennes University’s partnership with Toyota: A model in workforce development

Industry-driven
A Toyota workforce study revealed: Within 10 years, at least 200 employees in their Indiana manufacturing plant would retire.
Action: Partner with university to launch the Toyota Advanced Manufacturing Technician Program

Making instructors comfortable with on-camera roles

How to coach for distance learning and lecture capture

For an increasing number of faculty members, class prep has gone high tech. It’s not about simply reviewing notes and planning course exercises. It also involves stepping in front of a video camera. Whether it’s for distance learning programs or flipped classrooms, colleges and universities now need faculty who are able and willing to teach on camera.

On-camera: Performance tricks from the pros

Following are 10 ways to increase the odds of engaging and connecting with students through video.

Course connections: A new MOOC phase of student engagement

Ensuring that students are engaging in their distance learning coursework

In an online seminar on the Greek rhetorician Isocrates offered at the University of Pittsburgh, 176 students listened to a live stream of a discussion among graduate students taking the on-campus version of the class and then asked questions or made comments via Twitter.

The eight graduate students in the brick-and-mortar class took turns recording lectures once a week for the online students during the course this past fall. And both the online and doctoral students could interact with one another on the discussion board on Blackboard’s CourseSites platform.

Stanford’s hybrid MOOC offers alternative

Graduate students work on same projects as 25,000 MOOC takers

When Tina Seelig, executive director of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program, taught “A Crash Course on Creativity” last spring, the 38 students in her graduate class worked on the same projects as the 25,000 people around the world who took the MOOC version of the course.

The MOOC not only offered an alternative to Stanford students who were unable to take this oversubscribed class, but also included perspective from people across the globe.

Is there a business model for MOOCs?

Considering the costs of offering massive open online courses and the return on investment

An increasing number of colleges and universities are offering MOOCs, but few have crunched the numbers to determine whether these online courses can succeed as a business proposition. Where return-on-investment conversations are happening, they generally aren’t leading to comprehensive analysis.

Some institutions, however, are paving the way in their attempts to analyze the potential of MOOCs as a business model.

Putting cost calculations in perspective

The right MOOC business model will vary by institution, experts say

Online education providers say university and college clients considering developing MOOCs as a long-term strategy need to think about the economies of scale gained and how long courses can last before the content gets out of date.

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