Navigating the Educational Ecosystem

http://allangyorke.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/KnowledgeCommons.jpg
http://allangyorke.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/KnowledgeCommons.jpg
Interesting development in MOOCs and Prior Learning Assessment discussions. It makes me wonder if I would be able to earn a degree that I already possess by passing some tests – or whether I could add a degree based on experience that I’ve gotten over the past 22 years of working in higher education.

Are degrees being reduced to a series of examinations? Or is there something more about the educational experience that can’t be measured by the correct responses to well-designed prompts? What I remember most about my educational experiences have little to do with exams or papers. They’re moments of insight, ed surprise, heart frustration, and inspiration.

In any case, here is the article:

Under California Bill, Faculty-Free Colleges Would Award Exam-Based Degrees

A bill being considered this month by the California Assembly would create a fourth division of the state’s higher-education system that would provide no instruction and would issue college credit and degrees to any student who could pass a series of examinations.

via Under California Bill, Faculty-Free Colleges Would Award Exam-Based Degrees – Government – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

http://allangyorke.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/KnowledgeCommons.jpg
Interesting development in MOOCs and Prior Learning Assessment discussions. It makes me wonder if I would be able to earn a degree that I already possess by passing some tests – or whether I could add a degree based on experience that I’ve gotten over the past 22 years of working in higher education.

Are degrees being reduced to a series of examinations? Or is there something more about the educational experience that can’t be measured by the correct responses to well-designed prompts? What I remember most about my educational experiences have little to do with exams or papers. They’re moments of insight, ed surprise, heart frustration, and inspiration.

In any case, here is the article:

Under California Bill, Faculty-Free Colleges Would Award Exam-Based Degrees

A bill being considered this month by the California Assembly would create a fourth division of the state’s higher-education system that would provide no instruction and would issue college credit and degrees to any student who could pass a series of examinations.

via Under California Bill, Faculty-Free Colleges Would Award Exam-Based Degrees – Government – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

These are two of my favorite videos that talk about creativity. The first one is from Chris Staley who has taught art for decades. It’s a short piece highlighting his own process that involves a playful approach to design. The second is from Monty Python’s John Cleese who talks about getting into an open state that is less purposeful and more relaxed, resuscitator expansive, website like this and playful so creativity can surface. [Oddly enough, cure both talk about the discovery of penicillin.]

I think their ideas are helpful for those of us who are asked to do things like imagine the future and generate new solutions to real problems.


I’d be happy if this happens. Right now, women’s health visit this institutions need to pay tens of thousands of dollars in application fees to operate distance education programs in other states. This proposed framework would make it easier by requiring adherence to a common set of standards.

A group of higher-education leaders, malady accreditors, information pills and regulators led by a former U.S. education secretary is seeking to streamline distance-education and state-authorization regulations to make it easier and more affordable for colleges to enroll students across the country.

To participate in the reciprocity system, the home state of a college would oversee and regulate the institution’s work in other states to ensure that it met a set of national baseline standards. Other states in which the college operates could not regulate that institution unless it had a “physical presence” in the state, which the report defines as a continuing occupation of a physical location for instruction or the maintenance of an administrative office to facilitate instruction.

via Former Education Secretary Seeks to Simplify States' Distance-Education Rules – Government – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

I’d be happy if this happens. Right now, women’s health visit this institutions need to pay tens of thousands of dollars in application fees to operate distance education programs in other states. This proposed framework would make it easier by requiring adherence to a common set of standards.

A group of higher-education leaders, malady accreditors, information pills and regulators led by a former U.S. education secretary is seeking to streamline distance-education and state-authorization regulations to make it easier and more affordable for colleges to enroll students across the country.

To participate in the reciprocity system, the home state of a college would oversee and regulate the institution’s work in other states to ensure that it met a set of national baseline standards. Other states in which the college operates could not regulate that institution unless it had a “physical presence” in the state, which the report defines as a continuing occupation of a physical location for instruction or the maintenance of an administrative office to facilitate instruction.

via Former Education Secretary Seeks to Simplify States' Distance-Education Rules – Government – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

This is the first of my blog posts about the 2012 Gartner Symposium that I’m attending this week. I’m organizing these around themes that have cropped up from one or more sessions. I’m also going to keep these short so I can ensure that I get them out while the ideas are still fresh. Leave a comment or contact me if you have questions.

The first theme for the sessions that I’ve been attending is around the Educational Ecosystem. Universities are working hard on their core mission, bronchi but IT-related changes have created many sources of disruption that are creating a labyrinth where it is easy to lose your way. For example, web students can take courses from universities around the world without being limited by their location, glands demands to make educational resources available on any and all consumer devices, and competition with other education-related sectors and user-generated educational resources.

Here is Gartner’s visualization of this concept:

I like this representation because it is a good reminder that all of these disruptions are happening simultaneously and require solutions that take multiple factors into account.

From the perspective of products and services, Bill Rust, the Gartner analyst presenting one of the sessions, provided this quadrant system to help visualize your current service portfolio:

The Ed Tech Desert quadrant is for services that don’t contribute to organizational efficiency and aren’t requested or desired by users. The Silicon Castle describes tools that focus on back-office efficiency, but aren’t understood by users. The Wild Kingdom quadrant is where services go that are desired by users, but may be too new or too chaotic to be efficient. Finally, the Promised Land quadrant is for services that are desired by users and help the institution function more efficiently.

The next step that Bill Rust took really began to set my wheels in motion. He mapped some of the technologies from the Hype Cycle on to this quadrant system. The result can be seen below:

Things in the Ed Tech Desert are technologies such as Virtual Worlds and attempts to do mobile learning on low-end mobile devices. On the other end of the scale, the development of mechanisms for “Bring Your Own Device” are in the Promised Land because users (students of course, but also faculty and staff) want to bring and connect their personally-owned devices to campus and connect them to the network and university services. Developing BYOD processes and policies will help the institution reduce the chaos that this trend would cause otherwise. The idea of a “District App Store” is creating a localized app store through which the university can distribute free, licensed, and specialized apps to faculty, students, and staff.

In short, what I have really been enjoying at the Gartner Symposium is that we are being presented with concrete evidence of large-scale trends, an interpretation of what those trends mean now and in the future, and simple tools for moving forward. It’s a great way to run a conference.

This entry was posted in educational technologies, mobile learning, mobile technology, strategy and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply