You are here

Articles: Online learning

UPenn’s College of Liberal and Professional Studies now offers an online Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences degree. While many Ivies have digital advanced learning programs, this is the first online option for undergrads.

EDUCATION ALLIES—CSU-Global’s headquarters will be built by Aurora Public Schools on district-owned land outside of Denver. CSU-Global President Becky Takeda-Tinker (third from right) and Superintendent Rico Munn (second from right) call the partnership one of the first of its kind in the nation.

Colorado State University-Global Campus partnered with Aurora Public Schools to build a headquarters for the fully-online university on district land. The university will leverage lease payments to make college possible for more Denver-area students.

VIEWS YOU CAN USE—A teacher wearing smart glasses (right) can see student information projected in an augmented reality platform (left) developed by Carnegie Mellon University. The hovering icons indicate how students are faring on online assignments and if they need help.

When edtech developers at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania asked K12 teachers to wish for a superpower, the teachers imagined student data hovering in midair. Smart glasses can now provide that feedback. 

Kim Rocco Shields is a producer and director who has collaborated with more than a dozen colleges and universities to produce engaging online instructional videos on topics ranging from history to biology.

Higher ed institutions are applying a cinematic engagement model with broadcast quality standards to the distance learning experience to capture student attention. 

Many have spoken positively about the next generation of learning technologies, but there is reason for apprehension. While the enthusiasm of those joining the move to digital assets is encouraging, there is a certain amount of naiveté that comes with it. As a result, when people advocate for certain digital initiatives, it causes some to question what could go wrong.

Creating an online community that mirrors a school’s physical campus is another way to retain online students.

This can be achieved by digitizing freshman orientation, mental health counseling, and career and résumé services.


Link to main story: College students learning online, but stepping on campus

Many online students still have on-campus business, such as meeting with instructors and making payments, according to “Online College Students: Comprehensive Data on Demands and Preferences,” The Learning House Inc. (UBmag.me/demands).

Like their peers on campus, students enrolled in online programs benefit when they feel included in a community. Colleges cater to this population by offering in-person special events and extended office hours.

Train both students and faculty

The University of North Carolina at Pembroke uses WebEx to allow students—even those in very remote areas with no broadband internet access—to provide access to lectures online. The IT team initially offered training and on-demand assistance for students only, but its popularity inspired a new category of training focused on helping faculty too, says Nancy Crouch, associate vice chancellor for technology resources and chief information officer.

While providing access to courses is essential to educating students in remote areas, helping them feel they are a part of the campus community is another key piece for retention and completion efforts.

What: A branded campus app used to connect students with courses and campus life

Where: Lindsey Wilson College, located on the southern tip of rural Appalachia, in Columbia, Kentucky

What are the biggest technology barriers for students in rural areas who want to pursue postsecondary education but can’t get to a campus? How can colleges break through those barriers?

“The greatest challenge for students in rural areas involves access to engaging and pedagogically sound mobile learning experiences. Through investments in accessibility, a focus on mobile learning and a data-informed approach to instructional design, institutions have the opportunity to increase access and see more students graduate with high-quality credentials.”

Here’s how four institutions are bridging the gap between their campuses and students based in rural areas. 

In 2013, Glenda Baskin Glover became president of Tennessee State, the same historically black university that she graduated from in 1974.

As more textbooks and other learning materials become digitized, institutions regularly face challenges in smoothly integrating all the different resources into the LMS and other campus networks.

What should campus administrators consider as they integrate their digital textbooks and e-learning materials with their LMS and SIS systems? 

“Campus administrators need to ensure they understand their student experience goals relating to digital content. The technology ecosystem they use to manage and deliver this experience needs to be considered in full, and in service of their student needs—including privacy, content performance data and individual student data.”

—Ken Chapman, vice president of Market Research, D2L

Integration between digital learning materials and an institution’s learning and administrative systems has gotten better, but instructors, higher ed administrators and providers agree there’s more work to be done.

That work, providers say, is easier when all parties pitch in to figure out how to best serve students.

Pages