Hack (Higher) Education

Hack (Higher) Education

How new technologies can hack [higher] education, and how learners of all sorts can hack technology back.

May 17, 2012 - 5:09pm
A new crowdfunding site, Unglue.it launches today. It hopes to raise money for e-books, not to have them written but so that the funding goes towards paying authors or publishers for existing works, giving them a one-time licensing fee in exchange for their releasing their e-books for free, under a Creative Commons license and without DRM.  
May 15, 2012 - 7:07pm
In the last few weeks there have been several big announcements about digital textbooks: Microsoft's investment in Barnes & Noble's spinout of its NOOK and college bookstore divisions, for example, and news today that Inkling is partnering with Follett, which runs some 900 college bookstores. Will we see a "format war" between publishers and hardware makers over control of the higher ed textbook market?
May 13, 2012 - 10:59pm
With the proliferation of free educational resources, why pay for school?  Why pay to learn?  Sure, there's the argument about college credits and certification. There's the argument too that "you get what you pay for."  I'm particularly interested in the question of free learn-to-program resources (along with what works and what doesn't work -- paid or free -- for learners) in part due to the pivot that the folks at the startup Bloc have made. 
May 9, 2012 - 5:10pm
Ideally, I suppose, I should headline this post "5 Things I've Learned from MOOCs." That's likely what a course -- massive or online or open or not -- is supposed to have a student tout: what I learned. If I were being really forthright with my readers, I would headline this story "5 Things I've Learned from MOOCs as a Serial MOOC Dropout." That's certainly a warning that when I speak about my recent experiences with MOOCs, it's as a lurker and a dropout. But here are five things I definitely recognize that matter to me in terms of my success and completion in these courses.
May 2, 2012 - 11:46am
It's big news, but it's not really that surprising -- Harvard is getting in to the MOOC scene.  What is interesting to me about today's edX news is the universities' commitment to a research component, thinking about how these new initiatives work for learners both online and on campus.
April 29, 2012 - 6:15pm
My son graduated from high school almost one year ago. He opted not to go to college. Of course, the economy makes this a particularly challenging time for a young kid with no work experience and no college degree.  
April 28, 2012 - 2:37am
About a month ago, I decided I'd had my fill of the Silicon Valley tech blogs.  I can't even remember what triggered it -- a thousand different blog posts, all saying the same thing about the latest iPad probably.  So I unsubscribed to all the tech blogs in my feeds.  And one month later...?
April 25, 2012 - 11:04pm
The day before the "Pineapple-gate" story broke -- that is, the nonsensical questions on the New York state eighth grade reading assessment -- The New York Times' David Brooks called for more standardized testing in colleges. Some thoughts on a future of pineapples and robot-graders.
April 24, 2012 - 6:27pm
News broke this weekend about the University of Florida's plans to restructure its computer science department.  What are the ramifications -- on the department, on the discipline -- of this decision?
April 21, 2012 - 2:25pm
Some thoughts on MOOCs, community, college composition and robot essay graders.

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