Higher Education Strategy Associates

Friday Round-up

Frequently, I’m asked how I manage to write these blog posts every day. Well, a lot of it is planning – if you use the summer months to build up a stock of articles, the day-to-day is less onerous. And then there are days like today, when I blatantly cheat on the format by ditching reasoned argument and just belch up of a bevy of hotlinks accompanied by vaguely pithy commentary.

Reason Number One Why Universities Aren’t Rushing To Online. www.wetakeyourclass.com. Go ahead, click on it. You’re allowed to weep after reading it.

New Heckman Article on Early Learning. If you’re a veteran of the “why spend on college students when you can spend on early interventions” debate, you’ll like Nobel Prize-winning Economist James Heckman’s piece in this month’s Boston Review.

University of New Delhi Plans to Introduce Four-Year Degree. Presented without comment. It’s too easy and I have standards.

Department of “It Could Be a Hell of a Lot Worse.” Greek university professors asked to take a 17% pay cut (from a really low base). Japanese professors take an 8% cut, in line with other public servants, to pay for the Tohoku earthquake/tsunami. Seriously, why aren’t Canadian universities aggressively scouting in these countries? Our packages are so much better, it’d be a cinch to raid some good talent.

Missing Out on Revenue Streams. If the argument against online education is that students are paying for social experiences, then universities need to start monetizing some of these experiences. This one in particular seems like a good place to start.

There are Whole Graduate Theses in Psychology Waiting to be Written about This. Coursera’s free, non-credit MOOCs apparently are rife with plagiarism. Try introducing that clanger into the human capital theory vs. signaling theory debate.

Hong Kong Switches From a Three-Year to a Four-Year Curriculum. Also presented without comment. Although, man, restraint is hard.

Don’t bet on MOOCsThis article by Arnold Kling is, I think, pretty persuasive on why we’re all watching the wrong things in terms of how technology is affecting education.

More from the Department of “It Could Be Worse.” This one’s a bit dated, but I don’t think it’s widely known: Chinese universities are collectively in debt to the tune of $40 billion, mostly due – allegedly – to corruption (though given the Epoch Times’ well-known beef with the PRC, take that with a grain of salt). That sounds bad until you realize that per capita, it’s only about 20% of the size of the gap in Ontario universities’ pension funds.

Have a good weekend.

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